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Police seek suspect who drove car into protesters at UNM

September 26, 2020 GMT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Albuquerque’s police chief says he’s making a priority out of finding the suspect who reportedly drove a vehicle into a crowd of racial injustice protesters near the campus of the University of New Mexico.

No one was hurt in Friday’s incident.

“We will not tolerate this kind of behavior,” Albuquerque Police Chief Harold Medina said in a statement Saturday.

Demonstrators claim the driver was disparaging them before driving through the crowd. They had gathered for a third night of protests after a grand jury in Louisville, Kentucky, decided not to indict any of the officers directly involved in the death of Breonna Taylor.

KOB-TV reports the protesters were dancing in the street when the car drove by.

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Following the incident, protesters sat in the intersection at Central and Yale. The crowd began dispersing around 10:30 p.m.

Medina said Saturday police were not initially aware that protesters planned to march or be in traffic lanes along Central Avenue. He said officers subsequently attempted to create a perimeter to control traffic.

Medina said they were interviewing witnesses and attempting to gather evidence.

“This is a priority for us and we are following up on solid leads to identify the driver who is responsible for this dangerous action,” he said.

Medina said his department will “continue to work with protesters so we can make appropriate plans to allow for peaceful demonstrations.”

“We want to keep protesters safe, while also keeping streets safe for anyone in the area of protests. It is very dangerous for protesters to attempt to block roads with their own vehicles,” Medina said.