Los Angeles County jury announced that they find Officer Johannes Mehserle, former Bay Area Rapid Transit, guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the killing of Oscar Grant. This decision angered the public, as they expected more severe charges on the “racist culprit”, however, they kept their peace, but not for too long.
What seriously made the crowd’s blood boil, that they erupted out of anger to smash windows and start fires on the streets, is the police’s violent dispersal of the crowd after the announcement of the jury’s verdict. Police officers declared the crowd as “unlawful assembly” and started using force to spread the people away, which led to demonstrations, riots and series of attacks on the police officers. 50 people were arrested in this attack.
The public replied by ruining the communal and individual assets, stores, cars and even houses. The demonstrators smashed Foot Locker’s windows, and looters pulled shoes and T-shirts from the store.
Witnesses say that four police officers attacked a man, pressed his face to the ground, handcuffed him and dragged him away. One of the demonstrators sprayed, "You Can't Shoot Us All" on the street walls.
A member of the Labour Black League for Social Defence had a placard in her hand saying, "Oscar Grant: killed in cold blood — we will not forget".