Students ‘traumatised’ after being pulled from car by police

The protest in Washington DC on Tuesday night was peaceful and polite, in contrast to the previous nights’ demonstrations.

The crowd outside Lafayette Park near the White House protested the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minnesota.

Instead of spray paint, they used street chalk to write Black Lives Matter slogans on the asphalt in front of St John’s Church.

Protesters hold up placards by the metal fence recently erected in front of the White House. Picture: Olivier Douliery/AFP

Picture: AFP/Roberto Schmidt

Protesters chanted and talked among themselves, most wearing masks, but not keeping to social distancing for the coronavirus.

One protester, Mati Yiheyis, a 21-year-old college student at the University of Virginia, speculated that fears of coronavirus kept many older people away.

When one protester climbed a lamp post and removed a street sign he was roundly booed.

“It’s not what we’re about,” said protester George TJ Pierce of Washington.

The crowd started thinning out on its own after 8 pm, an hour after a curfew went into place, although a core group of several hundred remained at the fence, chanting at the line of police and soldiers in riot gear on the other side.

On Monday, law enforcement officers on foot and horseback aggressively drove protesters away from Lafayette Park, clearing the way for US President Donald Trump’s photo op at St John’s Church.

– AP

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