More than a dozen protesters arrested Saturday night in Downtown Phoenix

Protesters+shielding+from+Phoenix+Police+on+Van+Buren+St.+

Jason White - Photojournalist

Protesters shielding from Phoenix Police on Van Buren St.

Ivana Venema-Nunez , Reporter

On Saturday night, a march to occupy Washington St. in downtown Phoenix was scheduled, where all protesters were arrested after Phoenix Police deemed it an unlawful assembly. 

The march was scheduled at 7 p.m. and was organized by previous protesters that have participated in the Black Lives Matter protests.

The protest started at 8 p.m. where they met at University Park located in Downtown Phoenix on Van Buren St. and to avoid being identified, all were wearing black clothing, otherwise known as black bloc, and a few brought umbrellas to shield from being identified.

Phoenix Police Department announced protestors were subject to arrest, if they failed to clear the street, immediately once they spilt on Van Buren, according to Jason White, Northeast Valley News photojournalist.

Around 15 to 20 people attended and when walking past the Phoenix Police Department Headquarters on Washington, protesters were followed by police declaring this “an unlawful assembly and they are subject to arrest” at 8:33 p.m.

Protesters passed Phoenix Municipal Court, east from Phoenix Police Department Headquarters, where smoke bombs were released by demonstrators, according to White.

Construction barricades were moved by protesters to block the police in their vehicles from following the protesters as they walked and continued down Washington St.

Two members from the pro-police group, Patriot Movement AZ, started clearing the construction barricades for police to allow them to continue following protesters. 

The group took a left on 1st St. north and then took a left on Monroe St.

When they arrived back on Van Buren St. intersecting north 1st Ave. Police rushed and cornered protesters outside The Maricopa of Associations building.

Protestors were subject to less-lethal munitions and according to White, one protestor was hit in the face by pepper ball rounds. 

According to Phoenix Police, 18 protesters were arrested, three of them were juvenile. All 18 were charged with a riot charge.