Watch CBS News

Protesters Take To Downtown Streets In Wake Of George Floyd Death In Minneapolis; Officers Hurt Near Trump Tower

CHICAGO (CBS) -- It was another turbulent day of protests in Chicago Saturday, as demonstrators faced off with police – some spray-painting and jumping on buses.

There were reports that up to three officers were injured at the scene of a protest near Trump Tower. The severity of their injuries was not immediately learned.

The protests were all in response to the death of George Floyd, the handcuffed man who begged for air as a Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee on Floyd's neck.

Not all the protests were violent, but some of the crowds have been massive as the protests have wound through the downtown area.

At Wacker Drive and Wabash Avenue, video posted to Twitter showed protesters rocking a Chicago Police wagon.

Social video also appeared to show protesters beating a few Chicago Police officers, before other protesters jumped in to form a circle around them to protect them.

As CBS 2's Jermont Terry reported, people were honking horns at State and Madison streets downtown – where traffic could not get through. Chicago Police officers in blue helmets and riot gear were standing guard at Madison Street preventing demonstrators from heading north.

Around 4:45 p.m., the crowd tried to push through. Officers did not budge, and moved about a foot closer – at which point demonstrators ran.

Earlier, demonstrators were seen forming a human chain at Jackson Boulevard and Dearborn Street alongside federal plaza.

One officer drove through the human chain as a woman holding a sign stood in front of an officer's vehicle. But we heard another officer come up and tell the officer to stop moving forward as he banged on the fellow officer's vehicle.

A large crowd was seen congregating at Trump Tower, and a group was also seen chanting and holding signs at Dearborn and Washington streets in front of the CBS 2 Broadcast Center. A protester was seen clashing with police outside the Broadcast Center at 22 W. Washington St.

Nearby outside the George W. Dunne Cook County Office Building at 69 W. Washington St., protesters burned an American flag.

Lake Shore Drive was closed at Balbo Drive and at Chicago Avenue, the Eisenhower Expressway was closed the Ida B. Wells Drive exit, and the Ontario and Ohio Street feeder ramps to the Kennedy Expressway were all closed due to the protests.

Some Chicago Police squad cars were seen tagged with profane language, and protesters were seen getting on top of squad cars and lamp posts. One squad car on State Street was left with a flat rear tire.

Meanwhile, the photojournalist who was accompanying CBS 2's Ross Saturday afternoon was purposely pushed by a protester near Federal Plaza. He is fine, and the protester ran off.

Overall, what Ross and his crew saw were peaceful demonstrations – but that was not the case every time.

Around 3:10 p.m., a skirmish erupted after people started throwing water bottles at police around Adams and State streets. There was at least one other skirmish with Chicago Police nearby.

It was unclear Saturday afternoon whether there were arrests in either of those incidents.

The rally at Federal Plaza began around 2 p.m., with hundreds in attendance. After about 30 minutes, those in attendance began marching around the Loop.

Police blocked off traffic to ensure their safety.

A tagger spray painted a bus shelter nearby, and was reportedly taken into custody.

Protesters also lined up dumpsters to block Monroe Street near State Street, CBS 2's Marissa Parra reported.

One protester told us why she thought it was so critical to be part of the protest.

"I'm a black woman. My dad is black, my brothers are black, my husband is black, my sons are black," said Cindy Scott. "They could be out here. They could be on the ground. I could be burying them. That's why I'm out here. That's why this is important to me."

Mayor Lori Lightfoot urged protesters to remain peaceful.

"I support the expression of your First Amendment rights, but I'm urging, I'm urging, on behalf of every resident in every neighborhood, that that expression be done peacefully," the mayor said.

We also asked a protester whether there was a possibility for violence Saturday evening. She said she doubted such would be the case.

The Illinois National Guard said it Saturday that is was monitoring events in Chicago. Earlier Saturday afternoon, the Guard's Lt. Bradford Leighton said at this time, there has been no activation of the Guard in response to the protests, nor a standby or other actions – just monitoring.

For complete coverage of the situation in Minneapolis visit and stream CBSN Minnesota.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.