SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – Inland Port activists made their impassioned response to state and city leaders following a heated protest, and now police are having their say.
Salt Lake City Police Department released some body camera footage from Tuesday’s heated Inland Port protest.
Salt Lake City Chief of Police Mike Brown said 75 officers responded to the protest over a five-hour period that ended with assaults on six officers and 10 arrests.
“Our officers were spit on, scratched, kicked, punched and had bottles and different items thrown at them,” said Chief Brown.
The police were originally called by the employees of Salt Lake Chamber to respond to activists who entered their offices.
During a media briefing Thursday, Chief Brown play a short clip from an officer’s body camera video.
In the video, you can hear officers ask protesters to leave numerous times. Chief Brown said some refused and that’s when the arrests occurred.
“There was a lot a restraint, a lot of dialogue and a lot of officers asking people for voluntary compliance,” said Chief Brown.
The department has begun a criminal investigation into the matter to investigate the assaults and the destruction of property. The Internal Affairs division will be tasked with scrutinizing the actions of the officers, and a citizen review board will look into the incident as well, Chief Brown said.
“If we have people that come downtown– in our city to assemble and exercise their free speech, we will protect that, but if they’re going to engage in violent, destructive behavior we are going to stop that behavior and hold people accountable.”