Police arrest over a dozen people after riot leads to fires, vandalism in downtown Richmond

RPD Police Chief Gerald Smith gives update on last night's riots.
RPD Police Chief Gerald Smith gives update on last night's riots.(nbc12)
Updated: Jul. 27, 2020 at 2:09 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Richmond Police Chief Gerald Smith held a press conference Monday afternoon to address the riots that happened in downtown over the weekends.

Police say a large group of protesters gathered at Monroe Park after 10 p.m. when the park was closed. Several arrests were made for trespassing there.

After that, the group moved to the Broad Street corridor and moved eastbound for several blocks.

Protests in downtown Richmond.
Protests in downtown Richmond.(OliviaUgino/NBC12)

According to police, three fires were set in dumpsters, buildings were tagged with graffiti and windows were broken during the riot.

Seventeen people - including two minors - were arrested in total. The ages of people who were arrested range from 17 to 45 years of age. Chief Smith says those who were arrested were from the following areas:

  • Henrico
  • Richmond
  • Falls Church
  • Charlottesville
  • Mechanicsville
  • Herndon
  • Fredricksburg
  • Williamsburg

They face charges ranging from trespassing to rioting to possession of a deadly weapon during a riot.

Chief Smith says the city of Richmond received a flyer inciting fear and intimidation calling for a repeat of Saturday night’s riots, which lead to an increased police presence ahead of time.

Rewatch the police chief’s press conference on the weekend riots here:

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