Protestors at One Franklin Square in Washington, D.C. erupted a police response downtown after a few criminal acts drew attention from city blocks nearby.
Civil disobedience in a prior protest two streets from One Franklin Square started and ended with the blocking of checkpoints and a pull-and-tug effort from both protestors and police followed by tear gas deployments.
In the same day, after the U.S. Presidential Inauguration of Donald Trump, an arsonist could be seen with a flare in the street, leading to the burning of a street trash can. Another trash can would be tipped over and burned as well before an unknown aggressor shattered the window to a parked luxury limousine. The aggressor threw flaming debris into the driver’s seat, quickly sending the vehicle into flames while also igniting the SUV behind the limousine.
Smoke billowed up the adjacent building and drew crowds of street goers from several city blocks down. The flood of witnesses, journalists, protestors, and curious citizens dispersed at the sound of an advancing riot police line.
A perimeter established around the burning vehicles and debris allowed a fire brigade to extinguish the flames. Police crews continued to attempt to tame protestors – using tear gas in addition to at least three ‘flashbangs’ – and maintained the city block perimeter through the night.
Tensions picked up when protestors blocked a reopened street although police did not intervene with the immediate ‘sit-in’ demonstration. It is unclear when the situation cleared fully. This comes in contrast to a peaceful setting at the 58th Presidential Inauguration on The National Mall.