Kiki Ochoa (speaking)
  • Kiki Ochoa (speaking)
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Pedro Rios said he was having dinner with his wife Friday night (May 27) when they heard police helicopters overhead and saw helmeted police with full-face shields, batons and shields, plus body armor and armored SWAT vehicles herding protesters south from downtown into Barrio Logan.

According to Rios, the hundreds of anti–Donald Trump protesters from the barrio had returned to the neighborhood hours earlier, after a loud and peaceful march to and from the convention center, where Trump spoke to supporters. Following his speech there was violence and at least three arrests outside the convention center.

"Why is Barrio Logan so disrespected that they decided to push these protesters into our neighborhood?" Rios said he thought at the time. "Our neighborhood deserves peace and respect like any other neighborhood."

On Tuesday (May 31), Rios, of the American Friends Service Committee, joined Christian Ramirez and the American Civil Liberties Union in calling for an explanation from the San Diego police and mayor Kevin Faulconer of why the police squeezed demonstrators out of downtown, down Harbor Drive, and to the Barrio Logan sign before making dozens of arrests.

Calls to the police for comment were not returned Tuesday afternoon.

"We understand there may have been a need to mobilize a large number of police officers in the Gaslamp," Ramirez said. "What is troubling is that the mayor felt the need to mobilize a large police presence a mile away, here in a residential neighborhood."

Most of the people who marched from Chicano Park had long since left the park, Ramirez said; he was still at the park with his son.

Kiki Ochoa of the Union del Barrio said he was at a debriefing session at 25th and Imperial. None of the protesters who started at Chicano Park had been arrested, Ochoa said, and all were accounted for.

Like the other organizers, Ochoa became aware of the police action via the sound of the police helicopter buzzing overhead, and then through images on television that showed cops in riot gear and driving armored trucks down Harbor Drive and to the west edge of the barrio. There, police arrested about three dozen people.

“Something went wrong this past Friday, so we stand here asking for an explanation," said Norma Chavez Peterson from the American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego and Imperial Counties. "We want to make sure our community knows they should reach out to us so we can continue to document the accounts of witnesses."

(corrected 6/1, 12:15 p.m.)

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Comments

shirleyberan May 31, 2016 @ 7:28 p.m.

I saw the footage. Shades of Ferguson without reason. Do they know this is San Diego?!

1

ByeFelicia Aug. 21, 2016 @ 4:56 a.m.

probably bussed in. you would be surprised what 33 million can buy.

just be happy that they didn't do any permanent damage to the neighborhood.

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Sjtorres May 31, 2016 @ 10:28 p.m.

I'm troubled by the anarchists, foreigners and left wing agitators that attacked the police and were spurned on by the Barrio Logan community activists.

2

FreedomPlease May 31, 2016 @ 11:15 p.m.

Why the name calling?? Who do you personally know in "protestors"? this is inflammatory speech. There were trouble makers on each side, saw violence from both side on news video footage. But did only see activists ("protestors") put up peace sign and trying to stay between combatants. Please view local news coverage.

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ByeFelicia Aug. 21, 2016 @ 4:55 a.m.

I'm sensing a lot of hate in your tone. Perhaps you should take a moment to reflect on your words prior to posting anything further.

I too share the posters concerns about physical violence which has been paid for by a known criminal who has arrest warrants in two countries.

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cvret May 31, 2016 @ 10:54 p.m.

nonsense. the police made the troublemakers return to whence they came.

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FreedomPlease May 31, 2016 @ 11:29 p.m.

Sad to say, but I still see a lot of hate here. Rather than looking at facts. Trying to get evidence, disciplining those who did wrong: like female SD police officer that instagramed wish for violence/riot text & pic (of self in armor). More investigation needs to be made. Why did they, 2-3 armored police officers take down City Attorney candidate who was slowing walking backward with paper campaign signs? Most arrests were not violent, just taking away from scene, handcuffed, sent to jail. Please if you want to be honest ask for investigation. Why such militarized police forces & so many(18 agencies)? Why so long & far? Why didn't they arrest some Trump wearing clothing people who were violent?-Guy drapped in U.S. flag that was seen kicking and hitting people. The real story needs to be told. Also how much did it cost? Trolley shut down (effecting 100's if not 1000's), many roads closed, some for miles, hundreds of officers/policing people, barricades, helicopters, tank like vehicles, etc? All so that one group can hear another group that causes violent reactions? See media: Trump rally there, violence comes soon after. As local journalist said "all was peaceful until after the Trump Rally let out"

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