MONTREAL — The city’s so-called “anti police brutality protest” once again ended with hooligans attacking police officers and ordinary citizens while ransacking downtown stores.
Police arrested more than 200 people after a dozen police officers were injured and cruisers were overturned following the 16th annual protest on Thursday.
Police stun grenades injured at least two civilians. Rioters assaulted people who tried tostop the vandalism.
Riot police were deployed around downtown prior to the start of a late-afternoon march that included masked members of the anarchist Black Bloc, a group that routinely provokes police in the city and elsewhere.
The crowd swelled to 1,000 people and the rally was declared illegal around 6:30 p.m. Police used pepper spray and stun grenades to disperse masked protesters who had smashed windows and vandalized police cars, citizens’ cars and an ambulance.
One of the suspects was in possession of fireworks, police said.
There were reports that looters stole electronic equipment from a store on Ste-Catherine St., the main downtown commercial strip.
The Black Bloc has hijacked several protests in Montreal and Quebec City. The group also caused trouble in Toronto, where in the summer of 2010 members vandalized shops, banks and vehicles during the G20 Summit.