BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Protesters mobbed the streets of downtown Bakersfield Friday in the name of George Floyd, a black man killed after a white police officer knelt on his neck while detaining him. Hundreds were out here for the majority of the night, but most people were cleared by around 1:30 Saturday morning. It was a loud, and at times, dangerous event.
It all started at 5 p.m., with protesters gathering outside the Bakersfield Police Department headquarters on Truxton Avenue. Hundreds chanting as they began marching along the streets, blocking traffic.
But as the day progressed, and the crowds grew larger and louder, what was a peaceful protest, momentarily turned into a frenzy when a car rushed through the crowd, striking a 15-year-old girl, causing minor injuries. BPD said the driver, identified as 31-year-old Michael Tran was booked into jail for attempted murder.
The protest continued as the sun went down, with police saying a majority of people obeyed the law and eventually left without incident. However, ten people were arrested for resisting and obstructing officers during the protest. Some throwing bottles and rocks at officers and vandalizing the BPD Fallen Officer Memorial. Bonnie’s Best Cafe on 21st Street also had a broken window.
A wall of officers in riot gear appeared at the police station, facing protesters as tensions escalated. But things eventually calmed down, and many protesters left the scene by about 1:30 Saturday morning.
Anyone with information related to the vehicle assault, or the vandalism of the police memorial is encouraged to contact BPD at 327- 7111.