Police in Berkeley, California, fired tear gas, flash grenades and rubber bullets at anti-police brutality protesters on Saturday night.
The demonstrators took to the streets because grand juries in Missouri and New York refused to indict white police officers for killing unarmed black men.
"A small portion of protesters have been violent," Jennifer Coats, a spokeswoman for the Berkeley Police Department, told CNN. "They started throwing rocks and other projectiles at our officers. Some officers have suffered minor injuries as a result.”
The protest began at 5 p.m. as protesters peacefully marched and chanted “Peaceful protest" and “Black lives matter.”
UC Berkeley students joined the protests as did some masked protesters who vandalized local businesses, reports The Daily Californian.
At about 10:30 p.m., the police declared the protest to be unlawful and reportedly fired rubber bullets, tear gas and flash grenades (videos below).
However, some nearby concert goers were also caught in the tear gas.
“I’m not sure that’s necessary,” Elaine Dunlap, 74, told SFGate.com. “I think people have a right to protest, certainly for an issue as big as this.”
The police fired tear gas again at protesters at about 1 a.m.
There were also protests in dozens of other cities, including Philadelphia, Chicago, Las Vegas, New York City, Los Angeles and Seattle.
According to USA Today, Eric Garner's mother Gwen Carr told protesters to protest "in peace" and added, "It is just so awesome to see how the crowds were out there."
"They are out there. They are standing for my son. My heart is overflowing with joy. It's just a gracious feeling," said Carr.