No attacks led to violent clearing of protesters for Trump's bible photo op: officer - 2020-07-28
The U.S. Park Police and Secret Service violently routed protesters from Lafayette Square last month without apparent provocation or adequate warning, immediately after Attorney General William Barr spoke with Park Police leaders, according to an Army National Guard officer who was there.
The account of National Guard Maj. Adam DeMarco challenges the Trump administration's explanation that vicious attacks by protesters led federal forces to turn on what appeared to be a largely peaceful crowd June 1 in the square in front of the White House. Law enforcement and security officers that night clubbed and punched protesters and unleashed mounted officers and chemical agents against them in one of the most controversial confrontations at the height of this year's nationwide protests over the killing of Black people at the hands of police.
The forceful clearing of Lafayette Square, long one of the nation's most prominent venues for demonstrations, came minutes before President Donald Trump appeared in the area without notice, on his way to stage a photo event in front of a historic church nearby.