VIDEO: Berkeley police gearing up for Saturday protests

 

BERKELEY (KRON) — Police in Berkeley are bracing for another round of protests.

This comes after last month’s rally quickly turned into a bloody brawl between Trump supporters and Trump protesters.

The March 4 Trump rally sparked melees and resulted in several injuries and arrests.

This weekend’s protest is expected to happen this Saturday in the same area, Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park.

And as a precaution, the regularly scheduled farmers’ market has already been canceled.

A conservative group calling itself the Liberty Revival Alliance is billing Saturday’s noon event as a patriot’s day free speech rally.

Attempts to reach out to supporters for comment went unanswered but sponsors posted a video on Youtube.

But anti-Trump demonstrators aren’t buying the group’s message of free speech.

“This is the neo-nazi types,” By Any Means Necessary organizer Ben Lynch said. “These guys are the folks that were armed on Mar. 4. They took an ass-whopping, and they are trying…to come back here and save face.”

Lynch is part of one of the liberal groups behind a counterprotest scheduled for the same location at 10 a.m.

“No, we are not going to let them organize white supremacy and violence against Berkeley or against the Bay Area,” Lynch said.

Berkeley police say they’ve known about the rally and counter demonstration for some time.

“Our No. 1 goal is to make sure that our community has an opportunity to practice its First Amendment rights,” police Sgt. Andrew Frankel said.

Frankel says police have reached out to event organizers and other law enforcement agencies in preparation for Saturday’s rallies.

He also says they’ve reviewed what happened the last time around.

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