WATERLOO – Protests in Waterloo took a violent turn early Tuesday when demonstrators broke a store window and smashed a car windshield behind City Hall.
The vandalism came shortly before 2 a.m. after protesters, who had gathered at Lincoln Park, marched through the streets and passed the Kwik Star store at East 11th and Franklin streets. A member of the group hurled a rock through the store window, and officers intervened as the suspect fled into the neighborhood.
Remaining demonstrators complied with officers and sheriff’s deputies and moved on, ultimately stopping in the back parking lot at the municipal building, which also houses the police station.
After a few minutes of the crowd chanting “no justice, no peace,” a single demonstrator struck the windshield of a city vehicle parked on the lot. Within moments, a police car pulled into the lot, officers exited and began chasing the suspect and others who fled back toward Lincoln Park.
A brief showdown at the park ensued with police in helmets and riot gear forming a shield wall and demonstrators hurling ice and plastic water bottles. The crowd broke into smaller groups and walked off in different directions, taunting officers.
Three people were detained for failure to disperse as officers followed the groups into the downtown area. Shane Tyler Stone, 29, Maria Carrillo, 18, and a 16-year-old girl, all of Waterloo, were charged with rioting and failure to disperse. Carrillo was also arrested for interference.
Police said the trouble came during a second march that night. An earlier march concluded around 1 a.m. Tuesday without incident.
Minor fires plagued the city during the night.
Two parked cars in a dealership overflow lot at South and West Seventh streets caught fire just hours apart. The second fire — which started shortly before 3 a.m. — also damaged vehicles parked nearby. A short-lived fire was reported in Washington Park.
A table umbrella outside at downtown establishment, just blocks from Lincoln Park, was ignited and burned onto the table before it was extinguished by patrol officers.
Molotov cocktails in Corona beer bottles were tossed at the Dollar General Store on West Fifth Street and launched into the road on Broadway Street, according to officials at Waterloo Fire Rescue. No damage was reported from the fire bombs.
Big box stores in the Crossroads area closed early Monday and took extra precautions in the wake of violent protests elsewhere in the nation.
Target barricaded its entryways with shopping carts, Walmart stacked pallets in front its entrances. Dick’s Sporting Goods went with plywood.
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