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Austin protesters clash with police in the wake of Garrett Foster’s death

🕐 4 min read

By Jordan Vonderhaar, The Texas Tribune Aug. 2, 2020

Austin protesters clash with police in the wake of Garrett Foster’s death” was first published by The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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Throughout the summer, cities in Texas and around the country have seen protests and demonstrations against police brutality. On Saturday, protesters and law enforcement clashed in Austin, a week after protester Garrett Foster, who was openly carrying an AK-47 rifle — which is legal in Texas — was shot and killed by Daniel Perry, a U.S. Army sergeant, when he approached his car. Perry drove away, then called the police. Perry was released without being charged. Since then, questions have been raised about who was the aggressor.

Foster’s death fueled tensions Saturday night in the downtown streets of the state capital as demonstrators again gathered and local and state police turned out in massive force. Tribune photographer Jordan Vonderhaar was there to document the protest. Here’s what he saw.

State police in riot gear form a line along Congress Avenue and advance toward protesters to remove them from the street.
State police in riot gear form a line along Congress Avenue and advance toward protesters to remove them from the street. Jordan Vonderhaar
Armed protest sympathizers ride in the back of a pickup truck from a rally on the University of Texas campus to a memorial for Garrett Foster in downtown Austin, minutes after hearing of clashes between protesters and police.
Armed protest sympathizers ride in the back of a pickup truck from a rally on the University of Texas campus to a memorial for Garrett Foster in downtown Austin, minutes after hearing of clashes between protesters and police. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
A man with a sniper rifle slung over his shoulder stands among protesters who have gathered at the Garrett Foster memorial in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
A man with a sniper rifle slung over his shoulder stands among protesters who have gathered at the Garrett Foster memorial in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune

First: Armed protesters ride in the back of a pickup truck from a rally at the University of Texas to a memorial for Garrett Foster in downtown Austin, minutes after hearing of clashes between other protesters and police. Last: A man with a sniper rifle slung over his shoulder stands among protesters who have gathered at the Garrett Foster memorial in downtown Austin. Jordan Vonderhaar for The Texas Tribune

A protester confronts police in riot gear.
A protester confronts police in riot gear. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
Mounted officers from the Austin Police Department clash with protesters on the corner of Fourth St. and Congress Ave. in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
Mounted officers from the Austin Police Department clash with protesters on the corner of Fourth St. and Congress Ave. in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar
Mounted officers from APD ride towards protesters on the corner of Fourth St. and S. Congress Ave in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
Mounted officers from APD ride towards protesters on the corner of Fourth St. and S. Congress Ave in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar

First: Mounted officers from the Austin Police Department clash with protesters on the corner of Fourth Street and Congress Avenue in downtown Austin. Last: Police officers on horses and bicycles advance toward protesters. Jordan Vonderhaar for The Texas Tribune

Heavily armed state police in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
Heavily armed state police in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
State police in riot gear block protesters from gathering in the street in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
State police in riot gear block protesters from gathering in the street in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune

State police were present large numbers. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune

A protester armed with a baseball bat kneels in the street with fist upraised as protesters clashed with police in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
A protester armed with a baseball bat kneels in the street with fist upraised as protesters clashed with police in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
Members of the far-right Proud Boys militia stand on Congress Avenue across from the Garrett Foster memorial in downtown Austin.
Members of the far-right Proud Boys militia stand on Congress Avenue across from the Garrett Foster memorial in downtown Austin. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
A woman in zip-tie handcuffs waits to be loaded onto a bus after being arrested during protests against police brutality in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020.
A woman in zip-tie handcuffs waits to be loaded onto a bus after being arrested during protests against police brutality in downtown Austin on Aug. 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
Police load arrested protesters into a Travis County Sheriff’s Department bus. Several protestors were arrested after clashes with police in riot gear in downtown Austin on August 1, 2020.
Police load arrested protesters into a Travis County Sheriff’s Department bus. Several protestors were arrested after clashes with police in riot gear in downtown Austin on August 1, 2020. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune

First: A woman with her hands zip-tied waits to be loaded onto a bus after being arrested during protests against police brutality in downtown Austin. Last: Police load arrested protesters into a Travis County Sheriff Department bus. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune

A police officer sprays a protester with pepper spray as demonstrators clash with police in downtown Austin
A police officer sprays a protester with pepper spray as demonstrators clash with police in downtown Austin Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
A heavy police presence marked Saturday's protest in downtown Austin.
A heavy police presence marked Saturday’s protest in downtown Austin. Jordan Vonderhaar for the Texas Tribune
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