Two Federal Protective Service Officers were shot Friday night amidst protests in Oakland. One died from their injuries. Their identities have not been released.
The San Francisco FBI is investigating the shooting. In a statement they told Heavy:
FBI San Francisco and the Oakland Police Department are investigating a shooting that occurred at the Ronald V. Dellums Federal Building at 1301 Clay Street in Oakland, California. At approximately 9:45pm on Friday, May 29, 2020, a vehicle approached the building. An individual inside the vehicle began firing gunshots at contract security officers for the Federal Protective Service of the Department of Homeland Security. One officer was killed and another was injured. The FBI has deployed investigators and the Evidence Response Team to the crime scene. We will continue to work this investigation alongside the Oakland Police Department.
Federal Protective Service Officers work under Homeland Security to “prevent, protect, respond to and recover from terrorism, criminal acts, and other hazards threatening the U.S. Government’s critical infrastructure, services, and the people who provide or receive them,” according to their mission statement.
It is unclear if the officers were on duty to protect the building due to the protests or if they regularly patrolled the building.
Oakland Protests Escalated Quickly From Peaceful to Violent
Oakland Police were expecting the protests. Demonstrations have been erupting around the U.S. in reaction to the death of a black man, George Floyd, who was killed by a white Minneapolis Police Officer, Derek Chauvin who knelt on his neck for several minutes while arresting him for using counterfeit money at a store on May 25. Chauvin was charged with a third-degree felony and manslaughter on May 29.
Oakland Police Interim Cheif Susan E. Manheimer posted social media videos urging peaceful, safe demonstrations ahead of the protests, which were set to start at 8pm, but early this morning Manheimer made a new video saying that demonstrations turned violent causing damage and destruction, hitting businesses that had already been suffering due to Coronavirus.
According to Mercury News, about an hour after the protests started, “officers began using tear gas to disperse a crowd at 7th and Broadway while protestors set off fireworks and hurled bottles toward a line consisting of officers and Alameda County sheriff’s deputies.”
By 9:30 the city declared An “unlawful assembly” and more tear gas was used on the throngs of people estimated at about 7,500.
Demonstrators stayed on the move around the downtown area, smashing windows, starting fires, tearing boards off of businesses, and spraypainting buildings, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Mayor Ted Wheeler declared a state of emergency and issued a curfew amidst the chaos.
Destruction and a Death Were Left in the Wake of the Protests
According to local CBS affiliate KPEX, “At least 18 people were arrested, six Oakland police officers were injured, buildings damaged, a freeway blocked, a Walgreens looted and a fire set at Mercedes Benz Oakland during the hours of violence that erupted following what had been a peaceful demonstration by a crowd estimated to be at least 7,500.”
Mayor Ted Wheeler declared a state of emergency and issued a curfew amidst the chaos which will stay in effect until Sunday.
This is a developing story. Heavy will continue to update as new information is released.