New Orleans Police Fire Tear Gas into Protest
New Orleans Police fired tear gas into George Floyd protestors last night after the crowd allegedly began planning to assault a line of officers.
NOPD Chief Shaun Ferguson says social media videos back up their claim that some elements were organizing an effort to break through police lines and get onto the Crescent City Connection Bridge.
“We did not deploy gas on a peaceful protest. We did deploy gas on individuals who chose to use force against our officers,” says Ferguson.
Ferguson also disputed claims that officers fired pellets or other projectiles into the crowd.
Ferguson says after rolling one tear gas canister and firing another from a launcher the crowd somewhat began dispersing.
“We still had approximately two to three hundred individuals still left up there with us. A few of those two to three hundred attempted to continue to break the line leading to the arrest of five individuals,” says Ferguson.
Protestors had set up on the interstate near the bridge connecting the East and West Bank of New Orleans.
Ferguson says he is disappointed last night’s protest turned violent. He says up until then New Orleans demonstrations had been a model.
“We have been the prime example, the shining beacon for the entire nation. We have been receiving phone calls throughout the week as to what is New Orleans doing to keep things so peaceful? And we just tarnished that,” says Ferguson.
(Story written by Matt Doyle/Louisiana Radio Network)