Truck drives through crowd of protesters on Minneapolis bridge

Officials say driver hospitalized after being dragged from his truck and beaten, but no others were hurt

A fuel semi-truck drove into a George Floyd demonstration of thousands of people on a bridge in Minneapolis apparently without seriously injuring anyone.

A large crowd protesting against the death of Floyd and against police brutality had blocked the Interstate 35 west bridge near downtown Minneapolis on Sunday evening when they spotted the fuel tanker coming around the curve at speed.

The mass of people parted in panic and fled to the sides of the bridge as the truck neared the crowd, coming close to hitting several people. People threw their bicycles into the path of the truck to slow it down.

As the vehicle ground to a halt, the crowd surged back toward the driver and dragged him from his cab and beat him. Protesters smashed the windshield of the truck.

Officials said no protesters appeared injured, but the Minnesota state patrol said in a tweet that the action appeared deliberate. The patrol said the driver was hurt and taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Minnesota governor Tim Walz later said the man was released from the hospital and taken into police custody. Public safety commissioner John Harrington said traffic cameras appear to show the truck was already on the freeway before barricades were put in place to shut it down at 5pm.

A local television station aired footage of the incident, with a shaken anchor narrating, “Oh my gosh, the speed at which that truck approached, and even some of the brave people attempting to slow it down.”

Horrifying traffic cam video of a semi truck going full speed through crowds of protesters on the I-35W bridge in Minneapolis. pic.twitter.com/6D7HeTS07g

— Jason DeRusha (@DeRushaJ) May 31, 2020

Minneapolis, where Floyd was killed on Monday, saw its sixth consecutive day of protests on Sunday. Police and protesters engaged in running battles on Saturday night, after the city had declared an evening curfew and the Minnesota governor had activated the national guard to help enforce it.

As Sunday evening’s curfew approached, there were small scuffles between police and protesters. But few people defied the curfew in the end. The main highways were closed, and many side streets were shut off by makeshift barricades.

The city’s main gathering place remained the street where Floyd was arrested on Monday, now a memorial filled with flowers.

Protesters are demanding the arrest of three other officers who were present when Floyd died on Monday. One officer, Derek Chauvin, has already been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter.

On Sunday, Minnesota attorney general Keith Ellison told NBC’s Meet the Press the charges against Chauvin could be increased, and that the three other officers involved were “not out of the woods”.

Associated Press contributed reporting

Contributors

Chris McGreal in Minneapolis and Lois Beckett in San Francisco

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Hundreds join Minneapolis high school walkouts: ‘Police don’t care about us’
Teens gather in Twin Cities to condemn the killings of Daunte Wright and George Floyd as Chauvin trial continues

Amudalat Ajasa in Saint Paul and Lois Beckett in Minneapolis

20, Apr, 2021 @5:00 AM

Article image
Minneapolis: police and protesters clash for second night over death of Daunte Wright
Police deploy teargas and flash-bangs in Brooklyn Center as Wright’s father Aubrey rejects police claim that officer intended to fire Taser

Oliver Laughland in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota and Martin Pengelly in New York

13, Apr, 2021 @4:41 PM

Article image
'He'll change the world': George Floyd's family pays emotional tribute as crowds flock to funeral
Floyd laid to rest in hometown after killing by police in Minneapolis, as dozens outside service wear T-shirts reading ‘I can’t breathe’ and ‘Black Lives Matter’

Vivian Ho in Houston

09, Jun, 2020 @11:03 PM

Article image
Minneapolis: journalists teargassed while covering George Floyd protests
Teargas fired ‘at point-blank range’ at group that identified themselves as journalists as police worked to impose curfew

Sam Levin in Los Angeles

31, May, 2020 @3:50 AM

Article image
Hundreds demand justice in Minneapolis after police killing of George Floyd
Protesters clash with police, who deploy teargas and stun grenades, following death of black man at hands of white officer

Jared Goyette in Minneapolis

27, May, 2020 @2:19 AM

Article image
Night of flames and fury as Minneapolis swells with outrage over George Floyd killing
The 3rd precinct station was not the only building that burned overnight, as furious protesters’ demand for justice intensified

Chris McGreal in Minneapolis

29, May, 2020 @5:09 PM

Article image
Dispatch from Minneapolis: the night the city cracked down on George Floyd protests
Protesters who refused to obey the curfew Saturday faced teargas, flash bombs and baton rounds from police

Chris McGreal in Minneapolis

31, May, 2020 @7:26 AM

Article image
George Floyd's daughter and her mother make first public appearance
Roxie Washington tells crowds she wants justice for Floyd as protests defy curfew across US

Vivian Ho and Maanvi Singh in Oakland and Ankita Rao in New York

03, Jun, 2020 @4:46 AM

Article image
The governor says Minneapolis is 'under assault'. Who is behind the protests?
Narrative of outsiders stirring up trouble was not without truth, but blaming ideological agitators is also politically convenient

Chris McGreal in Minneapolis

31, May, 2020 @12:01 AM

Article image
George Floyd: protests and unrest coast to coast as US cities impose curfews
Saturday’s protests come after a volatile night in which anger around police brutality erupted into violence across the US

Richard Luscombe in Miami, Chris McGreal in Minneapolis, Sam Levin in Los Angeles, Julia Carrie Wong in Oakland and David Smith in Washington

31, May, 2020 @7:42 AM