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HPD Chief Art Acevedo says weekend protestors included out-of-town provocateurs

HOUSTON – More than 400 arrests were made over the weekend during protests for George Floyd, according to the Houston Police Department.

HPD Police Chief Art Acevedo said some were provocateurs who came to town to cause violence, but the city won’t say how many they’ve identified or what groups they’re affiliated with.

Protest arrests by date
Protest arrests by date (KPRC 2)

On Friday night, 137 protestors were arrested.

Protest arrests by date
Protest arrests by date (KPRC 2)

More than 100 of them for blocking roadways

Protest arrests by date
Protest arrests by date (KPRC 2)

On Saturday night, more arrests, a total of 275.

Protest arrests by date
Protest arrests by date (KPRC 2)

And all but 30 of them for blocking roadways.

But some protestors were charged with more serious crimes for assaulting police officers, committing burglaries and aggravated assault. Acevedo said some of those arrests Friday night were connected to groups intent on violence.

“We’re seeing there are people, not people of color coming into this city and other cities to actually start agitating and actively engage in violence,” Acevedo said.

The protest became so intense Friday night that eight officers were injured and 16 police vehicles damaged. Acevedo said at least 20 of those arrested Friday night were from out of town. But at this point, the police department has not said which groups are suspected of sending agitators or how many.

Mayor Sylvester Turner said the amount of out-of-towners isn’t a large number.

“I think the largest majority of people arrested were locals,” he said.

The mayor was quick to point out that Houston hasn’t seen the violence and looting that has plagued other big cities.

“The good news is other than what occurred on Friday, the people in the city of Houston and people who engaged in these protests have done so peacefully,” Turner said.

The mayor said security will be tight when he joins the Floyd family for a memorial march Tuesday afternoon from Discovery Green here to City Hall.