ATLANTA — The Georgia Department of Public Safety said a group of protesters vandalized its Atlanta headquarters Sunday morning.
Channel 2′s Lauren Pozen was at the scene along United Avenue all morning, where Georgia Bureau of Investigation agents assisted with the investigation.
DPS officials told Channel 2 Action News that a group of 60 to 100 protesters dressed in dark clothing and masks came to the headquarters around 1:05 a.m.
“They were armed with bricks, landscaping bricks, Molotov cocktails, fireworks. Their one mission was to destruct property and that is exactly what they did,” Lt. Stephanie L. Stallings, spokesperson for the Georgia Department of Public Safety.
Georgia Department of Public Safety building was vandalized over night. Troopers say around 1am, a group of protesters approached headquarters – armed with rocks and spray paint and went on to cause extensive damage. Live report in under 9 mins from the scene. pic.twitter.com/lJYMIFj9Du— Lauren Pozen WSB (@LaurenPozenWSB) July 5, 2020
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Kimberly Krautter lives up the street and shared video of the protesters with Pozen. She noticed the group walking down the street and saw things escalate.
“I heard the glass shatter, plate glass shatter, one of the offices. I saw one that seemed to be glowing from the inside, then I saw somebody carrying a flaming object and then threw it into a newly broken window and explode,” Krautter told Pozen.
The damage was extensive. Troopers said fireworks were thrown into the building causing a small fire. Two DPS employees were treated for smoke inhalation.
Investigators said protesters shattered the windows and vandalized nearby patrol cars. There was also graffiti spray painted along the front of the building with words like “KKK” and “Death by Oppression.”
“They were militant in their actions they came to do nothing but destroy property and that’s exactly what they did,” Stallings said.
While it is the headquarters for Georgia State Patrol, it also houses several other state agencies. The cost of the damage is unknown at this time but estimated to be in the high thousands.
Pozen saw a couple of people detained at the scene but no arrests have been announced.
More than a dozen GBI investigators are here outside Georgia State Patrol HQ in SE Atlanta where there is significant damage. Windows are smashed and that's not even the extent of the damage. Working to learn more and will have an update at 6am on Channel 2. pic.twitter.com/KT0JdVE97t— Lauren Pozen WSB (@LaurenPozenWSB) July 5, 2020
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