Free speech rally in San Francisco turns violent, Trump supporters and counter protesters clash


A free speech rally near Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco turned violent Saturday, as clashes between opposing groups resulted in the injury of multiple President Trump supporters.

Trump supporters received a permit from the city of San Francisco to hold a rally at the United Nations Plaza at 1 p.m., to protest Twitter's censorship of posts that violate its user policy. Policed posts include those containing messages of hate speech and fake political news.

“Only about 10 or so Trump supporters showed up, but about 200 counter protesters showed up as well,” Da Lin, a reporter with KPIX-5, told KCBS Radio.

San Francisco Police Department officers clad in riot-gear formed a barrier between the demonstrators and were taunted by some.

Allegations that the group of Trump supporters included members of the Proud Boys spread on social media.

Shortly after 1 p.m., organizers decided to officially cancel the rally, but that didn't stop confrontations between those already present.

Fights broke out and multiple Trump supporters were punched, Lin said.

One man suffered multiple injuries to his leg and was taken by ambulance to San Francisco General Hospital. He told Lin he was beaten up by some counter protesters.

The Trump supporters left at about 2:40 in the afternoon, Lin told KCBS Radio.

Counter protesters marched to Twitter’s headquarters on Market St. to celebrate and began to disperse later in the afternoon, he added.