HOUSTON - More than 300 people were arrested in Houston after protests on Friday and Saturday.
FOX 26 crews were at Smith and Preston Streets Saturday night downtown, as an estimated 50 people were taken to jail with their hands zip-tied.
“I was standing in the middle of the road,” one person told us as police escorted them away.
“My friend over here got arrested,” said Aaron Webster. “They seem to grab the easiest ones. I don’t think any of these people were being aggressive or anything like that. Just people walking, trying to prove a point.”
City officials say they’re pleased with Saturday’s protest. According to Police Chief Art Acevedo, most of the protesters remained peaceful on Saturday. However, as the clock approached midnight, Chief Acevedo believes different groups of people congregated throughout Houston, some with the intention to cause harm or destruction.
“They weren’t out there to exercise their rights,” said Acevedo, referring to some of the non-peaceful people downtown. “They were out there to cause problems.”
Roughly a dozen Houston police officers were injured Friday and Saturday, while some protesters were also hurt. Video uploaded to social media shows one woman getting run over by a police officer on a horse.
“It’s not our intent to try and injure anyone,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner. “I certainly want to apologize to her for that.”
Several Houston businesses were looted Friday night. In response, Galleria Mall was closed Sunday.
“Most of the people that were arrested were from the City of Houston,” said Turner. “Whether or not you’re from here, engaging in any sort of activity that is destructive is not going to be acceptable.”
According to Chief Acevedo and Mayor Turner, they’re pleased with Saturday’s peaceful protests and they hope the protests continue peacefully in the future.