Thousands of protesters lined the streets outside President Donald Trump’s rally in Phoenix Tuesday night, and when they mingled with Trump supporters, a few incidences of violence broke out.
As Trump fans filtered out of the event, police resorted to tear gas to calm the crowd. One clash led to a black Trump supporter getting punched in the face. New York Times’ correspondent Simon Romero caught the supporter on video in a pickup truck packed with MAGA-hat-wearing passengers, arguing with protesters surrounding the truck.
The video depicts the man holding back one of his friends, who was arguing vehemently with protesters on the ground from the bed of the truck. The friend then hops into the driver’s seat while the supporter in question jumped in the bed and the truck drove slowly through the crowd. Commotion broke out when the driver appears to turn the wheels directly toward protesters on the sidewalk. The truck moves slowly, however, until one sign-bearing protester charges up to the bed of the truck and punches the black man repeatedly in the face.
The truck stops briefly and reverses, then drives away.
The clashes come just one week after racial violence in Charlottesville further fueled a burning cultural debate in the United States. Trump has taken relentless criticism from the left for saying “many sides” were to blame for the death of a counter-protester at the nationalist rally.
On Tuesday evening, Trump defended his response to the Charlottesville terror attack, blaming the “crooked media” for painting him as a racist.
See video of the scuffle below:
Ugly scene in downtown Phoenix. Watch til the end pic.twitter.com/K516TbufIw
— Simon Romero (@viaSimonRomero) August 23, 2017
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