People gather in the intersection in front of a convenience store in Baton Rouge, Thursday, July 7, 2016, a day before another protest outside Baton Rouge police headquarters resulted in 31 arrests. Alton Sterling, 37, was shot and killed by Baton Rouge police while selling CD’s in front of the store. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Thirty-one people were arrested Friday night (July 8) and early Saturday during a protest outside Baton Rouge police headquarters, Louisiana State Police said. The crowd protested what they believed to be police brutality demonstrated by this week’s fatal shooting of Alton Sterling by a Baton Rouge officer.
While protests at the convenience store where Sterling was killed remained peaceful in the two days and nights following the July 5 shooting, Louisiana State Police spokesman Lt. J.B. Slaton confirmed reports that frozen water bottles were thrown at troopers Friday night.
Some troopers were outfitted with shields, helmets and other riot gear to assist Baton Rouge police, he said. The Advocate newspaper reports some of the protesters were detained using zip ties.
Baton Rouge Police Department spokesman Cpl. L’Jean McKneely said there no injuries reported at the scene and no reports of gunfire.
The protesters chanted, “No justice, no peace!” and “Y’all have guns. We have posters.”
Approximately 50 troopers were at the scene, Slaton said. More protests are planned this weekend in Baton Rouge. Slaton said State Police will assess the size and tone of the crowds to determine how to deploy troopers to assist local law enforcement.
“Every situation is different,” he said.
Slaton and McKneely did not have information about the kind of charges those arrested face.
The agency’s French Quarter task force had a presence at a peaceful protest in Lee Circle Friday night, which drew hundreds around the Robert E. Lee monument, Slaton said. As of late Friday night, no arrests were reported related to the gathering in New Orleans.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.