The mayor of Richmond, Virginia, has blamed undercover white supremacists for the riots during Black Lives Matter protests this weekend.
On Sunday, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney claimed white supremacists had marched “under the banner of Black Lives Matter” during the protests and inflamed the situation until it became a riot.
“Last night, that [violence] reared its ugly head right here in the City of Richmond … We saw some violent actions, violent protests, spearheaded by white supremacists. And frankly, it was disgusting. Disgusting. As they held plywood shields that read, ‘BLM,’ these folks toured areas of damage downtown, The Fan, breaking windows, tagging private property with hateful language,” Stoney said during a press conference, according to News 6.
According to police, a group of white supremacists urged a group of people rioting to remove police tape and run into a police station. They also led them to set fire to a dump truck in front of the station. The group is believed to be the Boogaloo Boys, an extreme white supremacist anarchist group. He also said antifa protesters committed acts of violence at the protests.
“We have identified some individuals who have been seen with the Boogaloo boys and some antifa groups around the area,” Richmond Police Chief Gerald Smith said during a press conference. “The majority of those individuals who were there last night were Caucasian.”
Smith commended the Black Lives Matter protesters who didn’t act violently.
“As I began with, I want to send a thanks to the BLM protesters on the ground who decried the white supremacists once they were identified. I’m thankful to you for drawing the line and sticking up not just for the sanctity of your movement, but also the safety of your fellow Richmonders that you marched alongside as well,” Smith said.
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