Complaints skyrocket over police response to George Floyd protests
July 3, 2020
On his fourth straight day of peaceful protest, Soren Stevenson linked arms with demonstrators gathered at the Interstate 35W on-ramp, staring down a phalanx of Minneapolis police in riot gear.
Without warning or provocation, bystanders say, officers fired a series of flash bang grenades and tear gas to disperse the crowd. A nonlethal police projectile struck Stevenson in the face, exploding his left eye and leaving him partly blinded.
Nearly a week after George Floyd was killed by Minneapolis officers, the state's largest police force struggled to restore order amid unrest in its smoldering city. Although police officials acknowledge that some innocent civilians were injured during days of protests and riots, they argue that the situation required force to maintain public safety and it was difficult to distinguish between peaceful protesters and those wishing to cause harm.