A peaceful immigrant-rights march had a violent ending as Seattle protesters and police clashed on May Day.
Law enforcement used pepper spray and “flash bangs” in an attempt to subdue protesters who were hitting them with bottles and rocks.
The day started out peacefully when thousands of people marched about 2 1/2 miles in the hopes of putting the spotlight on immigration reform. The march ended at Seattle's downtown Jackson Federal Building. There was also a May Day rally supporting immigrant rights and labor.
Marchers carried signs, with messages like "There are no illegal humans," and "We are America." At least one of the signs suggested that the U.S. should legalize marijuana.
The violent outburst certainly took the focus off of immigration reform.
In addition to the rocks and bottles, protesters hurled construction street barriers, trash cans and newspaper bins on the streets in an attempt to slow down police officers. The windows of local businesses were also smashed.
May Day in Seattle had a similar outcome last year. In 2012, anarchists attacked storefronts, used smoke bombs and broke the windows and doors of a federal building, USA Today reported.
Olivia One Feather joined the crowd on Wednesday so she could observe how police handled themselves. She was pepper sprayed in the face while trying to video record officers. "They don't have any manners. They don't say please or give you time to get out of the way," she said.
She was supportive of the protesters. “They're doing what we need to do to stand up to ourselves,” she said. “These are our streets and we have the right to take them."
The Seattle Police Department announced via Twitter that 11 adults and two juveniles were arrested for property damage.