What began as a peaceful protest on a sunny day in Albuquerque turned more and more unruly Sunday, as hundreds of people marched back and forth on Central Avenue until police threw more than two dozen canisters of tear gas and arrested at least half a dozen protesters, reports the Albuquerque Journal.
Marchers took over much of Downtown and the university area during a daylong demonstration, where they called for accountability for Albuquerque police and justice for James M. Boyd, a homeless, mentally ill man who was shot and killed by officers March 16 in the Sandia foothills. Protesters also decried past APD officer-involved shootings.
The rally began at noon. After 9 p.m., police used around a dozen canisters of tear gas to disperse protesters near Central and Vassar, several people were seen being arrested, and Mayor Richard Berry said in a late-night news conference that an officer was injured.
The march along Central boiled over at several points, with protesters ignoring police commands to disperse and having a standoff with officers in riot gear. The demonstration came after an online “hacktivist” group, known as Anonymous, issued a call to action in response to seeing video of Boyd’s shooting. The group also waged a cyberattack against the APD website, which was inaccessible throughout the day Sunday, and what appeared to be a number of officers’ personal phone numbers were released by a purported hacker.