Chicago, IL – The Chicago Police Department (CPD) released video of the mayhem at Grant Park on Friday when 49 officers were injured by antifa hurling bottles, fireworks, and other projectiles at them in what officials described as a planned “mob action” to hurt police (video below).
Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said 18 officers were injured badly enough so that they had to be transported to the hospital for treatment of their injuries, WLS reported.
Superintendent Brown said police were caught off-guard by the organized and violent mob that attacked officers who were surrounding the base of the Christopher Columbus statue on July 17.
He said one sergeant suffered a broken eye socket from shrapnel, WLS reported.
“What began as a peaceful protest at Grant Park Friday evening devolved into a very dangerous situation, in which mob action deliberately sought to injure officers,” the superintendent said.
Video from police helicopters, city surveillance cameras, and bodycams showed the vicious attack on police as the protesters assembled themselves in the green space at Grant Park that surrounds the statue.
In the video, a group of people broke off from the larger, then-peaceful demonstration and moved under a group of trees.
Then suddenly, countless black and navy blue umbrellas were put up to block the view of the group’s actions from the sides and the sky.
Police said that while the protesters were blocked from view, they put on helmets and black bloc clothing.
After they had geared up and opened their umbrellas, video from above showed a large group of antifa forming a line to approach the statue in the center of the park.
Just as they got to the officers who were surrounding the statue, the mob stopped moving as one umbrella-covered blob and started hurling things at the police, the video showed.
The video captured protesters with rolling wagons disturbing frozen water bottles to the protesters to throw at the officers.
Police said the PVC poles holding the Black Lives Matter signs had been sharpened to a point and protesters used them to jab at officers as they attacked, WLS reported.
“Peaceful demonstrations have been hijacked by organized mobs,” Superintendent Brown told reporters. “We just don’t want to believe people would act this way toward us. That they would take advantage of us. That they would take advantage of our sacred right, the First Amendment… I have ordered all of our officers to wear any and all protective gear when protests occur.”
He said going forward, he would approach every protest in Chicago as though it might turn violent.
Even notoriously anti-police Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot condemned the violent protesters’ actions, WLS reported.
“That’s not peaceful protest, that’s anarchy, and we are going to put that down,” Lightfoot said. “We are actively investigating, and we will bring those people to justice. We want people to feel safe.”
On Monday, President Donald Trump announced that he would be sending more federal police to major cities to combat violent riots, including 150 to Chicago.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has not officially declared the deployment but President Trump recently sent federal officers and agents to Portland to crack down on riots there.
Sources told the Chicago Tribune that plans were in the works to deploy 150 Homeland Security Investigations (HIS) agents to the Windy City soon.
“I’m going to do something that I can tell you, because we’re not going to leave New York and Chicago and Philadelphia, Detroit and Baltimore, and all of these — Oakland is a mess. We’re not going to let this happen in our country, all run by liberal Democrats,” President Trump said on July 20, according to the Chicago Tribune.
“We’re going to have more federal law enforcement, that I can tell you,” he said. “In Portland, they’ve done a fantastic job. They’ve been there three days and they really have done a fantastic job in a very short period of time, no problem.”
On Saturday, the head of Chicago’s police union called Mayor Lori Lightfoot a “complete failure” and asked President Trump “to help save Chicago,” WBBM reported.
Watch the “mob action” unfold in the video below. WARNING: Graphic Violence: