- The Washington Times - Monday, August 28, 2017

Six people were injured, including a police officer, and 13 protesters arrested Sunday after a violent black-masked antifa mob swarmed Berkeley in order to protest a previously cancelled rally against Marxism.

“One officer was injured during an arrest and several officers were struck with paint,” said the Berkeley Police Department in a press release. “Six people were injured and treated by paramedics. Two of those individuals were transported to local hospitals for treatment.”

The 13 people arrested in the melee face a variety of charges, including battery, vandalism, assault with a deadly weapon and felony assault.

Thousands of protesters descended Sunday on Civic Center Park in Berkeley to counter the scheduled No to Marxism in America rally, even though the event’s organizers had cancelled it the day before over fears of violence.

Those fears were founded. Video taken in Berkeley by local news crews, including KCRA-TV in Sacramento, showed one man falling to the ground as he was beaten by black-masked protesters, and another being hit by sticks or bats.

Joey Gibson, founder of Patriot Prayer, was hit with a pole, sprayed with tear gas and struck with thrown debris as he tried to escape from an angry crowd, as shown on video taken at the protest.

Mr. Gibson, who was ultimately rescued by Berkeley police, had cancelled Patriot Prayer’s Freedom Rally, which had been scheduled for Saturday in San Francisco, saying he feared leftist protest groups like the antifa and By Any Means Necessary would turn it into a “huge riot.”

The No to Marxism in America rally was organized by Amber Cummings, a transgender Trump supporter of President Trump who had previously denied allegations that the No to Marxism event was a white-supremacy gathering.

“That is an outright lie that this mayor is propagating,” she said, referring to Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín, in Berkeleyside. “White supremacy is not allowed at my rally. We do not want racist people there. We do not want hateful people there.”

Mr. Gibson, who is half-Asian, had also denied any link to white nationalists or neo-Nazis after House Minority Nancy Pelosi called his event a “white supremacist rally.”

Most of the 13 people arrested were locals from the East Bay, while others hailed from Oregon, Nevada and San Diego County.

• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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