ATLANTA — Channel 2 Action News spent Monday going through details of arrests made during weekend protests in Atlanta.
Channel 2 investigative reporter Nicole Carr searched through available records from Friday through Monday morning. They included people Fulton County Jail officials believe to be connected to the protests and disturbances, but the sampling was small compared to the number of people who took to Atlanta streets in the same time period.
As of 5 p.m. Monday, available Fulton County Jail records account for 83 arrests in Atlanta, while APD reports 298 arrests from the weekend. Most of the arrests account for Georgia residents who lived in Atlanta, Alpharetta, Smyrna, White, Gainesville, Douglasville, Conyers, Kennesaw and Union City. Half a dozen came from Colorado, Kansas, New Jersey, Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Charges for the group ranged from disorderly conduct to inciting riot and pedestrians in the roadway.
Sunday, Dunwoody police also confirmed up to 200 cars circling the area around the Perimeter Mall area early Saturday morning. Police said the cars had out-of-state or obscured plates.
“A lot of their vehicles had license plates covered up, had multiple occupants inside the vehicles wearing masks, gloves, things like that,” said Sergeant Robert Parsons.
Monday night, APD reported an additional 52 arrests from the day, but charge information was not immediately available.
Late Friday afternoon, Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields noted there were no plans for an “arrest fest.” The area around Centennial Olympic Park became home to a peaceful protest and then rioting as business windows were busted and police units and park structures set on fire. Crowds moved from downtown to Buckhead where looting started late Friday night.
Saturday, Shields spoke about outsiders infiltrating the area Friday.
“These were not Atlantans. We knew they were not Atlantans. They didn’t know how to get from the state Capitol to downtown. That’s a clue,” Shields said during a news conference Saturday. She and Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms referred to instigators as anarchists. Monday, several agencies declined to confirm specifics.
Speaking about the migration into Buckhead, Shields said, “By now it had become very apparent to us that this was a highly calculated terrorist organization, and I don’t say that loosely. When you come in and your goal is to inflict harm and property damage without any regard to human life, you are a terrorist.”
Sunday night, the U.S attorneys in Georgia put out a joint statement saying they’re working with the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force to identify criminal organizers and instigators, saying they’ll go for federal prosecutions where they can.
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