(The Center Square) — A riot was declared by the Seattle Police Department on Saturday following demonstrations in the thousands in the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood.
A federal judge issued a temporary restraining order against the city council's ban on tear gas, pepper spray and other crowd control methods ahead of the weekend's demonstrations as requested by the U.S. Department of Justice.
Washington leaders, including Gov. Jay Inslee and Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, urged protesters to demonstrate peacefully and condemned the reported deployment of federal agents in the city for escalating tensions.
Federal agents did not appear to intervene as thousands of protesters marching with the Black Lives Matter movement called for budget cuts of 50 percent to the Seattle Police Department.
Protesters have further called to reallocate the funds to community service projects. Durkan has voiced support for police budget cuts of 20 percent this month.
The SPD reported Sunday that 47 arrests were made and there were damages made to the police's East Precinct wall in addition to several local businesses.
SPD reported that 58 officers sustained injuries ranging from cuts to abrasions Saturday from projectiles. Another was hospitalized.
Videos posted to social media have shown Seattle police using pepper spray against protesters and a volunteer medic in scrubs.
Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best confirmed hours ahead of the weekend protests that officers were equipped with pepper spray, batons, and blast balls. Best had said in a statement on Friday that the SPD would "not deploy CS (tear) gas."
Tear gas is typically deployed in the form of three common airborne agents—chloroacetophenone (CN), chlorobenzylidenemalononitrile (CS), and dibenzoxazepine (CR).
CN is the most toxic and at high concentrations has been known to cause death. CS is the least toxic and often causes a burning sensation and tearing of the eyes.
Durkan was one of five American mayors along with Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler to sign a letter on Monday addressed to congressional leaders that opposed federal agent deployments.
"These federal forces are not trained in modern policing in a city context, such as de-escalation, have a completely different training and mindset regarding use of force, and have no cultural literacy regarding the communities they are engaging," the join letter read. "They are operating without coordination with local law enforcement and show a disregard for the legitimate use of our U.S. military and federal resources."