Footage showing a U-Haul truck full of ‘riot supplies’ being unloaded ahead of protests in Louisville has raised questions about the organizers behind the demonstrations, which turned violent after nightfall, with two cops there shot and wounded.
The rented box truck was spotted at 2pm on Wednesday, as Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron was still speaking at a press conference about the grand jury findings in the Breonna Taylor case.
The grand jury’s decision not to charge Louisville officers directly in Taylor’s March 13 shooting death during the execution of a search warrant outraged protesters, who from the onset were equipped with shields and masks delivered in the mysterious truck.
Video from the scene shows the truck being unloaded with large signs reading ‘abolish the police’, ‘abolition now’ and featuring the three-arrow logo associated with the far-left Antifa movement.
The rented box truck was spotted at 2pm on Wednesday, as Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron was still speaking at a press conference about the grand jury findings
Many of the supplies distributed from the truck were seen being used in the protests, including reading ‘abolish the police’, ‘abolition now’ and featuring the three-arrow logo associated with the far-left Antifa movement
A large number of makeshift riot shields were also distributed to the protesters who swarmed around the U-Haul, many featuring slogans supporting the Black Lives Matter movement.
‘Shields, we got shields!’ one woman is heard shouting.
A woman who appeared to be an organizer was also seen distributing masks, goggles and water bottles from the back of the truck. Such supplies are often used to counteract the effects of chemical irritants used by police in crowd control.
Many of the supplies distributed from the truck were seen being used during several hours of peaceful protest marches that followed. But after night fell, the situation exploded into violence, and two police officers were shot.
The pre-staged supplies, obviously ready before the grand jury decision was announced, raised questions about who was behind the organization and funding of the mysterious delivery.
‘They’re organized, and there’s funding behind this as well. We know that there was that one U-Haul, I wonder if there were others out there as well,’ remarked Fox News contributor Deneen Borelli on-air.
Protesters march in Louisville with the pre-staged supplies after a judge announced a grand jury would not directly charge officers in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor
Police detain protesters, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, in Louisville, Kentucky
Others suggested that the staged supplies might be an election-year dirty trick perpetrated by conservatives to discredit liberals.
‘Does anyone else think that the Trump campaign or Republicans could be behind this U-Haul van handing out shields and ‘abolish the police’ signs in Louisville?’ one person asked on Twitter. ‘It would just be so easy for Trump and the GOP to sell their stupid narrative, wouldn’t it?’
A spokesman for U-Haul did not immediately respond to an inquiry from DailyMail.com late on Wednesday.
The demonstrations in Louisville remained mostly peaceful until several gunshots rang out as heavily armed police closed in on a throng of protesters at nightfall, ordering the crowd to disperse about a half hour before a 9pm curfew was due to go into effect.
Gunfire erupted from the crowd moments after police had fired chemical irritants and ‘flash-bang’ rounds.
Police officers move past Louisville City Hall as a curfew is implemented at 9pm to disperse protesters. The scene turned violent after dark, with two officers shot and wounded
A fire burns in downtown Louisville on Wednesday during protests over the Taylor case
Protesters throw water bottles at police officers on Wednesday in Louisville, Kentucky. Protesters marched in the streets after a Kentucky grand jury indicted one of the three officers involved in the killing of Breonna Taylor, who was fatally shot by Louisville Metro Police officers
Kentucky State Police patrol as protesters leave Jefferson Square Park following the shootings
Two officers were shot and wounded, interim Louisville Metropolitan Police chief Robert Schroeder told reporters.
One suspect was arrested, and the two wounded officers were in stable condition – one undergoing surgery – with non-life-threatening injuries, Schroeder said. He gave no further details.
Earlier in the day about a dozen people were arrested in a skirmish between hundreds of demonstrators and a group of law enforcement officers in the Highlands neighborhood just outside downtown Louisville.
Some windows of nearby businesses were also broken. The crowds largely dissipated after Wednesday night’s shooting.
The grand jury indicted one of the three officers who fired during the March 13 raid, charging Brett Hankison on three counts of wanton endangerment for alleged wild shots that entered a neighboring apartment.
The other two officers were not charged, with the grand jury finding that their actions were justified after Taylor’s boyfriend first opened fire, striking one officer.