- Associated Press - Sunday, July 26, 2020

BALTIMORE (AP) - A building for a Baltimore police union was vandalized as demonstrators spent the weekend marching against racial injustice and in solidarity with protesters in Portland, Oregon.

People within a group of nearly 100 demonstrators spray-painted the Fraternal Order of Police Baltimore City Lodge 3 building and sidewalks on Saturday night with anti-police messages, The Baltimore Sun reported. A standoff occurred between demonstrators and police once officers on the job and vehicles arrived at the scene. A Baltimore police helicopter hovered over the scene, and the crowd eventually dispersed, according to the newspaper.

Lodge President Mike Mancuso called people who vandalized the building “anarchists” and “losers.” He said the American flag at the headquarters was also burned.

“This was an attack on not only our building but also on the men and women of the Baltimore Police Department, both active and retired,” Mancuso said in a statement released Sunday.

Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said there was “an active and ongoing investigation” into the vandalism and property destruction.

“While we will continue to engage with our communities to create and repair community-police relations and protect the First Amendment rights of our residents, we will absolutely not tolerate acts of vandalism and will hold these offenders accountable,” Harrison said.

The demonstrations were one of several held in Maryland’s largest city on Saturday, continuing weeks of nationwide unrest since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25. Protests also have emerged in cities in response to a showdown between protesters and U.S. agents at the federal courthouse in Portland.

Another demonstration on Saturday in Baltimore was organized by conservatives and supporters of President Donald Trump. The event criticized tactics of protesters and demonstration organizers across the country.

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