May Day Protests In Seattle Turn Ugly Again

May 2, 2013

May Day began peacefully in Seattle with a march for immigration reform. But in the evening, hundreds of protesters clashed with police.


Seattle Police officers face off against protesters downtown. In the background, an unidentified protester is hand-cuffed and placed under arrest.
Credit Deborah Wang / Northwest News Network

  Police used what they call “blast balls.” That’s a kind of explosive that also contains pepper spray.

Reporter Deborah Wang was on the scene Downtown.

Deborah Wang: “There are kind of running battles, it looks like, between folks in the crowd and police. There's a beer can that was just thrown, lots of glasses being thrown, bottles are being thrown at police, who are now keeping on moving forward, they are trying to push the crowd out of the downtown core, there is pepper spray in the air.”

Protesters ended up in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, where they smashed windows and overturned trash cans. Police say 18 people were arrested and eight officers received minor injuries.

This was the second year of May Day violence in Seattle. Last year, black-clad marchers smashed windows and vandalized property in the city's downtown.

Copyright 2013 Northwest Public Radio