NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Tennessee Highway Patrol arrested 55 people on Saturday evening who reportedly were looking to violate the closure of the State Capitol grounds following Saturday’s Black Lives Matter protests.
According to THP, the Capitol grunds were “clearly marked closed with digital signboards and paper signs” and that a group of protesters “became physical when they moved barriers that lead to the Capitol grounds.”
Troopers reportedly issued several notices with bullhorns to the protesters that the grounds were closed and instructed them to leave or that they would be arrested. Violators “began throwing water and other objects at troopers and then locked their legs and arms.”
Of the 55 people arrested for criminal trespassing, one of those was a juvenile who was released to his parents.
“Please let me stress to you, we did not want this to happen,” said Lt. Bill Miller with THP, “This was a clear provocation by those looking to instigate trouble. These actions came on the heels of a peaceful, well organized demonstration and did not have to happen.”