Monday, June 28, 2010

G20 Summit - Toronto Protests Part IV

This was a tension filled last few hours for me, the episode that rattled me the most. I was beginning to head home at around 8:15, when I saw thick black smoke rising from Queen Street. So, of course I ran straight towards it. At Queen and Spadina, another squad car had been set on fire, and it was burning hard as I arrived. A burly line of riot police was in place, holding the crowd back. There were no protestors here - only a rowdy group of drunkards looking for trouble. One repeatedly cursed at police, giving them the finger. As the two rows of riot police began beating their shields and pushing everyone back, about 10-12 horseback police trailed behind. Suddenly, without warning, the middle of the police line opened up, and the horses charged at us. I was in the first row, shooting photos - I immediately turned and ran, passing under some scaffolding on the sidewalk. Surrounded by horses, I managed to run out into the open. As I turned, I saw the horses pin the guy swearing at police, and two officers dragging him away. Not 2 minutes later, the riot police began charging the crowd. At that point, another idiot threw a full water bottle at police, from well back of the crowd, before running away. It was time for me to go. This was clearly escalating, and I had no intention of being arrested merely for being at the scene. I walked about 12 kilometres back to Yonge and Bloor, the closest subway station that was still open. Made it home at 10:30, tired, sore and a bit shaken, but otherwise alive.

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