September 1st, 2008
07:20 PM ET
6 years ago

Police arrest dozens of 'anarchists' outside GOP convention

Police in riot gear stand guard over protestors under arrest in St. Paul Monday.
Police in riot gear stand guard over protestors under arrest in St. Paul Monday.

ST. PAUL, Minnesota (CNN) – At least 56 people were arrested Monday after police fired rubber bullets and used pepper spray and tear gas to disperse a crowd demonstrating near the site of the Republican National Convention.

CNN photojournalists witnessed police detaining between 20 and 30 individuals with plastic handcuff a few blocks from the security perimeter around the Xcel Center in downtown St. Paul.

A crowd of 300 individuals was later seen conducting what appeared to be a sit-in at parking lot near the Mississippi River.

Earlier in the day a group of self-described anarchists threw park benches into streets and smashed windows Monday, police said.

Thomas Walsh, a public information officer for the St. Paul Police Department, said Monday afternoon said 13 people had been arrested so far, accused of damage to property and conspiracy to riot. Those arrested will be formally charged in Ramsey County District Court on Tuesday, he said.

The arrest of the "anarchists" came after nearly 5,000 protesters marched peacefully outside the site of the Convention site. While Walsh described the individuals as a being part of a "splinter group" from the main body of protesters, he said it would not characterize their activity as being a protest.

"I think they did a disservice to those that came here to protest," he said.

– CNN's Kevin Myers and Joe Johns contributed to this report.

soundoff (113 Responses)
  1. Borignal

    To: Repub turned Repub ......

    I understand your defense of your party, but implying that in any way, the anti-war protestors are supporters of the DNC (Democratic National Committee) is a stretch. There are millions of people who do not support the war with many different party affiliations (even Repubs like you).

    September 1, 2008 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  2. Chebon Henderson

    This is just the start of whats to come. When the serfs suffer they blame the noble thats incharge. Granted, the reason most are having trouble with the ecconomy is due to there own choices in life, they will still need some one to blame.

    Sounds ugly, but most would say they have children and familys.

    When the few have it all and the many have next to nothing- there will be riots in the streets. And no i am not a communist.

    September 1, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  3. John, FL

    I'd sue if I was arrested for exercising my CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS.

    September 1, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  4. ugadude

    love to see the police at work. cuff 'em and stuff 'em

    September 1, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  5. randy from canada

    "Minnesotians will now have a close up and personal look at the fringe element that Obama attracts."

    I didn't know that Obama was at the republican national convention....

    I think Minnisotans will now have a close up and personal look at the fringe element that the republicans attract...

    peace...

    September 1, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  6. Ramsi Hashash

    So 100 people are violent and that makes all members of the DNC violent people?

    So if you have 100 KKK members in LA or MS does that make all citizents of these great states KKK members?

    PA where do you live on the moon? The US lost the war because of the dems? Keep onbelieving this and continue to support the republicans, but later do not cry wolf.

    September 1, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  7. Mark F

    Some of you people are so ignorant! These are not supporters of the Democratic Party!! Anarchists are against the two-party status-quo. They want to abolish both the Democratic as well as the Republican party. Right now they're just really angry at the GOP mostly because of the war.
    Don't go blaming Democrats for all this because you can't be a Democrat and an anarchist at the same time!!

    September 1, 2008 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  8. dr.mimi de la cruz for OBAMA/BIDEN

    NEWS FLASH AMERICA !!!

    THESE SO DECLARED "ANARCHISTS" ARE

    AMERICAN CITIZENS, DEMONSTRATING IN AMERICA.

    September 1, 2008 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  9. rory ryan

    Just wondering, are these democrats causing the uprising, or are the republicans on this blog wanting to blame dems? Research before you blog. Emperical evidence only. OPinions are like ....holes we all have them.

    September 1, 2008 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  10. Amanda, gainesville, fl

    Anarchists? I don't think so.
    I'm watching the rally on CSPAN now...
    They have all kinds of speakers, including members of various political parties.
    They seem harmless, listen to the messages!

    September 1, 2008 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  11. Jean

    Strange I didn't see anyone protesting at the DNC. That must say something to the nature of the party.

    September 1, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  12. HoldenLitgo

    William, from Cali! said:

    "This is still America, disobey her rules or break her laws; you will rightfully pay the price…………"

    Unless you're Bush or Cheney, then you're above the law, never held accountable and get off free and clear. At least until you're indicted, tried and convicted for the war crimes you committed while in office. Their time is gonna come.

    September 1, 2008 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  13. bill s DE

    We didn't have that kind of reaction at the democratic convention.

    September 1, 2008 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  14. r

    Constitutional rights eh? I guess destruction of private and public property will be allowed more often under the Obama rule.
    I won't support McCain, but since Obama's worse, I say Go Palin and the republicans!

    September 1, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  15. Joel

    OK, I can't stay quiet when such stupidity is rampant in this forum. Lets clean some things up. Every person has the right to protest, that being said, no one has the right to riot and damage private and government property. Thats what the police were breaking up, not the peaceful protesters, but the violent rioters.

    And another thing, THIS IS A CIVILIAN POLICE FORCE. This is not a mythical GOP security force. Everything the police are doing is independent of any political party. They are just doing their jobs, legally and by the books.

    One last thing, to the sad, sad soul who thinks that the Boston Tea Party is what we celebrate on July 4th. NEWSFLASH, we celebrate the singing of the Declaration of Independence. The Boston Tea Party happened on December 16th.

    September 1, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  16. Cole

    I remember when this happened at the DNC last week....oop, wait it didn't. All protesters there were given civil rights. No one was afraid of them in Denver.

    September 1, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  17. The Hanoi Hilton Songbird

    For all those Repugs blaming this on the Democrats, you know many of the same groups protested at the DNC in Denver right?

    September 1, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  18. Will

    Yea, I bet the Bush administration has been the best recruiting aid helping the anarchist numbers grow. I'm also sure raiding their headquarters and this recent story have only swelled their numbers as well.

    McCain only brings people together...in jail.

    September 1, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  19. Che-3

    This is NUTS! Why should they be arrested for exercising their basic rights, the right to protest and demonstrate? These bulles in NAZI Boots should leave them alone.

    September 1, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  20. Catherine M

    Who says the protesters were Dems? If you wanted to see some Dems, you should have watched the DNC and Denver last week. The folks protesting outside of the RNC are just really pissed-off, Americans. Their frustration with this administration is so great that that's how they feel they have to express it.

    September 1, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  21. supporter

    Why do you not let them speak, When they are given freedom to speak they make the popint that they do not hold the same high values that the RNC does so it should make you look better the more they protest

    September 1, 2008 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  22. Michael

    Amy Goodman was arrested.

    Regardless of what you think of the protesters' opinions, they have first amenment rights.

    September 1, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  23. Rick

    These punky kids that I am seeing on television need to be sent to Iraq to defend the country that has allowed them to act in such a way. Furthermore, their parents should be made to tag along. THIS is what is wrong with this country ! Send them to France.

    September 1, 2008 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  24. MK

    America and all OUR freedoms are alive and well! Speak your minds, freely and without fear and violence! PEACE.

    September 1, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  25. Don

    YES John, and you should be duly arrested and duly prosecuted if purposely destroy public or private property like these idiots were

    September 1, 2008 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
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