Woman injured by Sacramento Sheriff's vehicle at Stephon Clark protest

An activist at a Sacramento demonstration protesting the police killing of an unarmed black man in his grandmother’s backyard was struck and injured by a Sheriff’s Department vehicle late Saturday as law enforcement officials tried to pass through the crowd.

The Sacramento Bee and The State Hornet newspapers identified the activist as Wanda Cleveland, 61. The Bee described Cleveland as a regular attendee at City Council meetings.

It said she was taken to a hospital with minor injuries and released early Sunday.

“He never even stopped,” the newspaper quoted Cleveland as saying. “It was a hit-and-run. If I did that I’d be charged.”

Sgt. Kevin Jordan of the Sheriff’s Department said he could not confirm that someone had been hit.

But videos posted on Twitter show sheriff’s vehicles, surrounded by crowds protesting the shooting death last month of Stephon Clark, moving slowly through the crowd as someone urges repeatedly on a megaphone, “Back away from my vehicle.”

As the first car creeps forward, a second appears to follow quickly in its wake, striking someone who falls to the ground. A video from ABC10 News in Sacramento showed the impact.

The California Highway Patrol said a pedestrian “who may have been a protester” was taken to a hospital with minor injuries.

A spokesman for the patrol’s South Sacramento office, Officer Michael Bradley, said it was investigating a collision that occurred around 9:30 p.m. outside the city limits near the corner of Florin Road and 65th Street. No further details were released.

Some Twitter users suggested that the second vehicle had sped up in order to hit a protester and then failed to stop.

Crowds in Sacramento, California’s capital, have rallied almost daily since Clark was shot and killed on March 18. They have urged the firing of the two officers involved, who have been put on administrative leave.

Clark, 22, died after he was shot eight times by police officers sent to investigate reports that someone was breaking car windows.

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

KAYNE ROGERS and MATT STEVENS © 2018 The New York Times

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