A huge force of Los Angeles cops in riot gear moved in to clear a notorious homeless tent city — sparking angry clashes with hundreds of protesters that continued into the early hours of Thursday.
Scores of police moved into the Echo Park encampment at around 10 p.m. Wednesday — and were met by more than 200 protesters opposing the sweep, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Protesters threw bottles and objects at the lines of officers in clashes over the encampment that has grown to hundreds of tents and has sparked alarm over rising crime, drug use and trash, the paper said.
The protesters, a mix of homeless people and activists, refused to budge as they chanted, “Whose park? Our park!”
The tense clashes lasted for hours, but by 12:30 a.m. about 40 protesters remained, watched over by several hundred police, the paper said.
Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore told the LA Times that homeless residents inside the park could stay overnight — but that no one else can enter. The encampment residents must leave within 24 hours, he added.