Police arrested 152 protesters who streamed through the streets Friday – some breaking windows and knocking down fences – after a white ex-transit officer, Johannes Mehserle, received the minimum two-year prison sentence for fatally shooting of Oscar Grant on a California train platform.
The case against defendant Johannes Mehserle has provoked racial unrest at every turn, and police in Oakland, the scene of the killing, were on alert for more problems following a sentence many thought was too light.
“This is outrageous – This sentence of two years is outrageous,” one protester told CBS Station KPIX. “For murder, for killing somebody!”
A rally billed as a tribute to Oscar Grant turned into a march through the downtown area, where people broke car windows and two windows on a bus. After police in riot gear repeatedly blocked and outflanked them, several hundred protesters splintered into smaller groups and entered residential neighborhoods.