I moved to San Diego last year when I joined inewsource, so I don’t profess to have deep knowledge of the history of protests in the city. But I have covered other protests in the past decade, including Occupy and Black Lives Matters demonstrations in Oakland.
After following the protests Saturday in La Mesa and from around the country in the past week, it was clear the unrest we are experiencing in San Diego in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis is unprecedented.
That’s why I decided to document the pain, anger and conflict that spilled out onto the streets of downtown San Diego on Sunday and law enforcement’s response to it.
I began photographing during the afternoon and continued into the early evening. When I arrived outside the Hall of Justice on Broadway, officers were setting up police lines around a group that had been demonstrating since the morning. Over the next several hours, police continued to block protesters’ movements on Broadway and the surrounding streets.
Officers fired tear gas and flash-bang grenades into the crowd at several points, causing many to flee and then regroup in front of the police line. Around 6:30 p.m., the protesters on Broadway were told to disperse and they began walking to a vigil at the County Administration Building on San Diego Bay.
As protesters gave speeches, played music and lit candles for black men and women killed by police, county sheriff’s deputies stood their own vigil inside the building. Shortly after 8 p.m., the Sheriff’s Department announced from a circling helicopter that an unlawful assembly had been declared and protesters were ordered to disperse or face arrest.
Most of the crowd remained until deputies fired tear gas and flash-bang grenades into the crowd. The protesters then dispersed into Little Italy and other parts of downtown, with law enforcement officers following them.
Here are some of the images I captured of the protests.
We'll let you know when big things happen.