Trump backers were ‘running for their lives’: San Jose police finally own up to severity of riots

Trump backers were ‘running for their lives’: San Jose police finally own up to severity of riots
Image: YouTube screen grab (via CBS SF Bay Area)

Newly released statements from undercover San Jose police officers reveal the extent of violence against Donald Trump supporters during the early-June riots in the city. One officer said he even described Trump rally goers as “running for their lives” from an attacking mob.

Several plainclothes officers were dispersed within the crowd during Trump’s June 2 visit to the city. Now, some of their statements have been released, as part of the arrest report for Antonio Moses Fernandez — a protester arrested at the rally for allegedly injuring a policeman with a barricade. The statements were uploaded by The Mercury News, which first reported on them.

In one officer’s six-page statement, he describes a state of chaos in which any person showing support for Trump was subject to mob violence. Several, he said, had to run for their lives:

On [June 2,] I was assigned to the Covert Response Unit and dressed in a plainclothes capacity.… Trump was scheduled to arrive in San Jose approximately 1800 hrs. … As time came closer to 18:00 more protesters arrived; mostly younger males and females between the ages of 14 to 25. They held signs denouncing Trump and some began burning the United States flag in the middle of the street. It became inherently dangerous for anyone wearing a hat or T-Shirt in support of Trump. I observed Trump supporters being spit on, objects being thrown at them, punched, kicked and even robbed of their personal belongings. In these instances I observed victims running for their lives because protesters began adopting the mob mentality and attacking people. I was unable to make contact with any of these victims due to my undercover capacity and fear for my own safety as well.

In addition to attacking Trump backers, the officer says many of the rioters were throwing all sorts of material at the police skirmish line created to contain them. Even when the plainclothes officer saw another officer injured, he said he had to delay making an arrest because the crowd was “too hostile” to do so safely.

Another officer was less descriptive in his own statement, but still made clear that the situation was chaotic and dangerous for Trump backers.

“Throughout the afternoon and evening I watched several individuals wearing ‘Trump’ articles of clothing getting punched, kicked and pushed,” he said.

Seven people, including Fernandez, have been arrested for their actions during the June 2 riots.

This report, by Blake Neff, was cross-posted by arrangement with the Daily aller News Foundation.

LU Staff

LU Staff

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