“Within five minutes into the march, we were met with a line of riot police blocking the street in front of us and the right, and all of them had batons in hand. The front of the march took off to the left in a frantic sprint and everyone followed. This set the tone for the rest of the night, as we continued to try to out maneuver the police as we were trapped several times, and continually threatened with the stalking presence of riot police and mounted police officers. At one point to escape being kettled, we ran across the corner of a small garden then through a parking lot.
Never did we feel comfortable, tension and stress were consistently present, and the hot summer-like temperatures weren’t helping our endurance. Even when we were allowed (practically forced) to travel down certain streets due to blockades we were constantly surrounded and trapped at any given moment making an emergency escape for anyone impossible in case things got bad, but nonetheless we all did the only thing we could do: march and chant our asses off.
As the march came to Washington and State St. once again protesters found themselves trapped. Several times before and often the amorphous group was conflicted in which direction to go, and at times considered turning around and going back the way they came. This time though it seemed as if they had had enough. They came to exercise their first amendment right, had been intimidated and bullied and instead of trying to outmaneuver the police would try to move straight through the police line.
At that point a shoving match ensued, but the police quickly upped the ante and started swinging their batons, beating protesters. I quickly backed up to the sidewalk as I anticipated things getting bad. It didn’t take long for a woman to emerge from the crown bleeding from the head, with blood covering about half of her face.