Police Sunday announced charges against two people following a 400-person strong rally in Fullerton over the in-custody death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
The demonstration began at 4 p.m. Saturday at the Fullerton Transportation Center at Harbor Boulevard and Walnut Avenue, according to Fullerton police Sgt. Eric Bridges.
The protesters rallied, then marched to the Fullerton Police Department at 237 West Commonwealth Ave., where they blocked Highland Avenue until an unlawful assembly was declared.
That’s where one protester was seen vandalizing a passing vehicle’s windshield, Fullerton Police Chief Bob Dunn said.
“Many have seen the disturbing video of the officers involved in the death of Mr. Floyd,” he said. “His death was wrong, and many of my colleagues have similarly condemned that action. The Fullerton Police Department values our relationship with the community, which has been built upon public trust, community responsiveness, and mutual respect.”
Dunn affirmed the constitutional right for people to protest in the community, but blamed activists with ”ill intentions” for turning a lawful protest into a criminal one.
The North Orange County SWAT team was called in and two people were arrested, Bridges said.
One of the suspects had a methamphetamine pipe, police said.
About 50 protesters returned to the transportation center, where the protest ended about 7 p.m., Bridges said.
The protest was peaceful and no injuries were reported, he said.
Dunn said officers had tried to contact protesters ahead of time “to help them facilitate their constitutional rights, while providing a framework for them that ensured the rights of everyone in our community,” he said. “We never received a reply.”
Anaheim resident Donald Gibson, 41, was charged with vandalism and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was being held at the Orange County Jail in lieu of $20,000 bail, police said.
Buena Park resident Valerie Paniagua, 24, was charged with failure to disperse. Police have accused her of laying down in the middle of the road.
She was booked and released on a citation at the Fullerton Police Department Temporary Holding Facility.
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