ATLANTA — The Atlanta Police Department announced the arrests of 23 people following a music festival that turned into a violent protest at the location where Atlanta plans to build a police and fire training facility.
On Sunday, around 5:30 p.m., police said a group of violent agitators used the cover of a peaceful protest to create a coordinated attack on construction equipment and police officers at the proposed Atlanta Public Safety Training Center.
Atlanta officials stated the group changed into all black, went inside the construction area, and threw large rocks, bricks, Molotov cocktails, and fireworks at law enforcement.
“This is not a protest,” APD officials said at a press conference Sunday night. “This wasn’t about a public training center; this was about anarchy.”
Authorities said the illegal activity could have resulted in bodily harm; no injuries were reported.
Officers have arrested a total of 23 people. Only two of them are from Georgia. The following have been charged with domestic terrorism, according to Atlanta police:
- Jack Beaman, GA
- Ayla King, MA
- Kamryn Pipes, LA
- Maggie Gates, IN
- Ehret Nottingham, CO
- Alexis Paplai, MA
- Timothy Bilodeau, MA
- Victor Puertas, UT
- Dimitri LeNy, France
- Amin Chaoui, VA
- James Marsicano, NC
- Samuel Ward, AZ
- Max Biederman, AZ
- Mattia Luini, NY
- Emma Bogush, CT
- Kayley Meissner, WI
- Luke Harper, FL
- Grace Martin, WI
- Colin Dorsey, ME
- Robert-Paul Fredrique, Canada
- Zoe Larmey, TN
- Thomas Jurgens, GA
- Priscilla Grim, NY
Police say 28-year-old Thomas Jurgens, who works as a staff attorney for the Southern Poverty Law Center, was one of only two Georgia residents involved in the chaos.
- Police, construction crews moving into site of proposed APD training facility
- Deal reached to move forward with APD training facility with community, forest protections
- Trooper recovering, shooter dead after raid at proposed APD training facility, GBI says
- Body camera footage of protester killed by GSP trooper ‘doesn’t exist,’ GBI officials say
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation continue the investigation.
Defend the Atlanta Forest sent a statement Sunday night that said in part.
“Cop City will never be a legitimate project. It continues to be widely opposed by Atlantans. The civil rights violations committed by police today reaffirms that this cop training facility should never be built. We stand steadfast in our conviction to build a new world in which all people are safe from police terror.”
Stop Cop City accused police of raiding their music festival not far from the site of the training center. Tensions have been high since a state trooper shot and killed a protestor at the site.
But the GBI says the protestor shot first.
Channel 2′s Michael Seident returned to the scene Monday where state investigators were seen combing the area and snapping photos of the charred debris left behind.
Police are standing by ready for anything while praying for a peaceful night.
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