Trump San Jose rally spawns fracas with protesters
By Associated Press | June 3, 2016, 12:36 EDT
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Donald Trump supporters leaving the presidential candidate’s rally in San Jose were pounced on by protesters, some of whom threw punches and eggs.
A dozen or more people were hit and car windows were broken. Trump hats grabbed from supporters were set on fire on the ground. At least one woman was pelted with an egg.
Police stood their ground at first but after about 90 minutes moved into the remaining crowd to break it up and make arrests. At least four people were taken into custody, though police didn’t release total arrest figures Thursday night. One officer was assaulted, police Sgt. Enrique Garcia said.
There were no immediate reports of injuries and no major property damage, police said.
Trump holds a rally Friday afternoon at the airport in the much smaller and more conservative city of Redding, where the high temperature could reach 102 degrees. Redding, far away from the large urban areas of San Francisco and Sacramento, and the anticipated triple-digit heat could make for a smaller and less active crowd.
Thursday night’s crowd, which had numbered over 300 just after the rally, thinned significantly as the night went on, but those who remained near the San Jose Convention Center were rowdy and angry.
Some banged on the cars of Trump supporters as they left the rally and chased after those on foot.
Mayor Sam Liccardo, a Democrat and Hillary Clinton supporter, criticized Trump for coming to cities and igniting problems that local police departments had to deal with.
“At some point Donald Trump needs to take responsibility for the irresponsible behavior of his campaign,” Liccardo told The Associated Press by phone.
Clinton and Democratic opponent Bernie Sanders will also make campaign stops in the state on Friday in California as they look to Tuesday’s state primary.
Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee, spoke for about 50 minutes at the rally, sniping at Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and calling her speech on foreign policy earlier in the day “pathetic” and “sad to watch.”
Protesters before the speech included Adam Rivas, a 22-year-old community college student who was born and raised in San Jose. He was holding a spray-painted sign that read “Dump Trump.”
Rivas said he was particularly disturbed by Trump’s remarks about Mexicans.
“For any one Mexican here he bashes, there are about 20 Mexicans out there who are hard-working and just doing their job,” he said.
Trump supporter Debbie Tracey, a U.S. Navy veteran from San Jose, said she came to hear Trump speak, and left his rally with two hats, a T-shirt and a handful of signs that said “Veterans for Trump.”
Passing in front of a wall of protesters, many chanting in Spanish, she said she supported Trump’s call for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
“I’ll go help build the wall because if you are going to come to this country, land of opportunity, you should be here legally,” she said.
Written by Martha Mendoza