Phoenix police warned demonstrators before releasing pepper spray and gas in the moments after President Donald Trump’s rally Tuesday, but that warning may not have reached everyone, Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams said.
Amid charges of civil-rights violations and complaints by some protesters that police struck without provocation, Williams commended her officers, saying she was proud of their professionalism in a tense environment.
Groups such as the ACLU of Arizona are calling for an independent investigation, saying that Phoenix officers failed to protect the First Amendment rights of demonstrators. The group is asking people to submit photos or video showing excessive use of force by police.
Williams said officers showed restraint and that they did warn protesters of their intent to use pepper spray and gas.
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