Protests in the wake of the George Zimmerman not-guilty verdict have been peaceful across most the country, but anger and violence are escalating in California.
At least 13 people were arrested Monday night after multiple acts of vandalism and assaults in the city’s Crenshaw District, according to the Associated Press.
The protesters reportedly broke windows, attacked people on sidewalks and even raided a Wal-Mart store.
A freeway in the San Francisco Bay Area also was blocked by an angry crowd.
About 150 people were involved in the violence, the Los Angeles Times reported.
At least 350 police officers were called to the scene to contain the crowd. City leaders didn’t give details on any injuries suffered during the chaos, but vowed to crack down and stop potential riots before they materialize.
“This will not be allowed to continue,” said LAPD Chief Charlie Beck, the L.A. Times reported.
Unlike the situation in L.A., peaceful protests, rallies vigils have taken place across the nation in the days since Mr. Zimmerman was acquitted in a Sanford, Fla., court on Saturday night. He had been charged with second-degree murder in the February 2012 shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
The case stirred emotions on both sides, from those who believed Mr. Zimmerman acted in self-defense to those who argued he profiled Martin as being dangerous because he was black.
Despite anger in the aftermath of Mr. Zimmerman’s acquittal, civil rights activists and leaders in the black community have encouraged protesters, including those in L.A., to remain peaceful.
But those calls increasingly are falling on deaf ears in the nation’s second-largest city, which has been the site of intense, racially charged violence in the past.
In 1992, deadly riots broke out following the acquittal of four city police officers charged with beating Rodney King.