All the protesters injured in Minneapolis, MN and beyond
The death of George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer has sparked protests in at least 1,600 places across all fifty states in America. Starting in Minneapolis and spreading all across the nation, these uprisings continue to flourish – the mission to end police brutality against black people is alive & thriving.
However, with these vigilant protests there has been harsh backlash from police. Many protesters have faced severe injury – only reinforcing their cause, urging an end to police violence. There has been great criticism of the media lately for lacking coverage of protesters who have been injured.
Here is a collection of protesters who have been injured so far. Keep in mind that this list is far from inclusive – countless unnamed others have faced injury while protesting widespread. The damage done goes far beyond the scope of what’s covered in this short report of injured protesters.
Please note, some of the pictures in this article contain blood and other potentially upsetting or triggering imagery.
In the epicenter of protesting, Minneapolis protesters have faced uncalled for retaliation from police officers. Reports detail how Minneapolis Police & Minnesota State Patrol have “tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed, shot in the face with rubber bullets, arrested without cause, and threatened journalists at gunpoint.”
One peaceful protester who faced the brunt of police retaliation is Soren Stevenson, a recent University of Minnesota graduate. According to a GoFundMe page made to cover his mounting hospital bills, Stevenson “stood at the front of the protest and was shot (unprovoked) in the left eye with a rubber bullet.” The page urges that the attack caused, “irreversible harm to the eye and extensive damage to the surrounding bone structures.”
Stevenson is not alone in this terrifying experience. Jared Goyette, a freelance reporter who was covering Minneapolis protests for the Washington Post details an account in which Minneaplis police used undue force against him, claiming an officer shot him in the face with a less-lethal ballistic. Goyette was merely standing alone carrying a notepad & camera when it happened.
However, these aren’t isolated incidents. Countless others have been critically impacted by an extraordinary escalation of unlawful force. In Minneapolis particularly, the safety of protesters as well as many reporters have been jeopardized.
Los Angeles protesters
Los Angeles has been another hotspot for many peaceful protests to arise. Though, similar to Minneapolis, protesters here have endured the unlawful force from LAPD and many have faced serious injury. Los Angeles Times reports that LAPD’s use of batons, and other weapons seems to violate rules placed on the police force after the beating of Rodney King, severely injuring protesters as a result.
Protester Deon Jones is one among them, detailing an account of how he sustained a serious head injury with two cracked bones in his face. After feeling a lash from a baton from behind, Jones then explains how an LA police officer shot a tactical gun at his face. Jones reports that he would have been blinded if that had hit him an inch higher.
One of the most viewed accounts of police brutality was recorded and shared by actor Matt McGory, famous for his role as a prison guard in Orange is the New Black. In this video it shows police officers swinging at people with their batons wildly “like they were trying to hit a home run.” Shot in the stomach with a projectile himself, McGory shares, “They just came after people, even when people had their hands raised.”
Los Angeles Times collected more reports of police violence, including Eric Schuh and his friend Danyel Norman. Both were hit in the mouth and throat by police projectiles, sustaining permanent damage. Norman then sought refuge in an alley that “resembled a triage ward” where others with similar injuries were treating their wounds.
New York protesters
In New York, tens of thousands of protesters joined forces to protest against racist police violence. New York protests too have experienced vicious backlash from the NYPD who used batons, pepper spray, tasers, & fists.
Judging by collected medical treatment forms, NYPD estimated that over 132 protesters were injured during the protests and their arrest between May 28 & June 7. The department has said, “this is without a doubt an undercount”. Many officers are under investigation or facing discipline for their conduct – one charged with misdemeanor assault for pushing a protester to the ground, causing a concussion & seizure.
Shellyne Rodriguez, activist & visual artist with Take Back The Bronx may have permanent nerve damage after cops zip tied her hands so tightly that they turned blue and had to be removed with pliers for 15 minutes. Another protester, Deon Richards suffered a heart attack after he was pepper sprayed, pushed to the floor, and pinned down with a policeman’s knee.
More dismay is shared after a video spread of 16-year-old Jahmel Leach being shocked in the face by a taser three times while protesting in the Bronx. A photo shows a long, bloody laceration running down the right side of Leach’s swollen face. Leach is left with facial fractures and damage to his jaw. Leach, like countless others, will be scarred by just one of the many instances of intense police violence directed at protesters.