Memphis Riot Over Fatal U.S. Marshal Shooting Injures 24 Police Officers

Violent clashes with protesters in Memphis, Tennessee resulted in at least 24 police officers with injuries. The protests came following the shooting death of a man killed by US Marshals during an attempted arrest, according to Reuters.

Two journalists were also injured when a protesting crowd attacked police with bricks and rocks.

Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said: 

“At least 24 officers and deputies were injured — six were taken to the hospital. Multiple police cars were vandalized. A concrete wall outside a business was torn down. The windows were broken out at fire station 31.”

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation says it has been called in to investigate the shooting, which occurred after US Marshals attempted an arrest of a man wanted on multiple warrants. The TBI said that the man rammed his vehicle several times into police cars before exiting the vehicle with a weapon.

The TBI release stated:

“The officers fired striking and killing the individual.”

Shelby County Commissioner Tami Sawyer claimed that nearly 300 people joined to protest the shooting. She tweeted: "Every life lost should matter...every single one. How many times will this be ok? It cannot continue to be."

Memphis Police Director Michael Rallings told NBC at a news conference:

 “The officers did an enormous job tonight showing restraint in a very volatile situation. Officers had to don protective gear as the crowd threw objects, and a 'chemical agent' was used to disperse the crowd."

The Memphis Police Department reported on Twitter that after the shooting, some police officers “received minor injuries” from people throwing “bricks/rocks” at them. A local newspaper in Memphis reported that the "tense standoff" wound up escalating with dozens of people.

Mayor Strickland concluded:

“Let me be clear—the aggression shown toward our officers and deputies tonight was unwarranted.”

Rallings concluded:

 "I do want to commend individuals that did not decide to commit acts of violence toward the police officers, that showed restraint — I know that there were many individuals in the crowd that tried to assist in keeping everyone calm. My message tonight is that, is we should all wait and make sure we know exactly what happened before we spread misinformation or we jump to conclusions."

He said police supported the right to protest, "but we will not allow any acts of violence, we will not allow destruction of property."