CPS Statement - Protest Update
Throughout the afternoon, today, Sunday, Nov. 19, 2023, two groups of protestors gathered at City Hall, to show support for Palestine and Israel, respectively.
Leading up to the event, we engaged with several community leaders and protest organizers, who indicated they expected large crowd sizes. In response, a number of CPS resources were deployed in anticipation of today's event.
Throughout the event, which saw crowd sizes of up to 2,000 people, officers were on scene to monitor the event, manage public safety and maintain the peace. A significant majority of demonstrators were co-operative with police, and acted in a lawful, peaceful and respectful manner.
During the demonstration, several individuals deployed smoke devices within the crowd and a large group marched throughout the downtown core. Due to the large crowd size, several roads were closed to ensure public safety. Following the march, a group of approximately 100 people separated from the main protest group and continued marching to the intersection of northbound Macleod Trail and 4 Avenue S.E., causing a complete blockage in traffic. Behaviour within this group continued to escalate and as a result, five individuals were taken into custody. Shortly after these arrests, traffic was restored in the area.
Three individuals have been charged with assaulting a peace officer. A fourth individual was charged with obstruction of a peace officer.
Charges are determined based on an individual's behaviour and are laid based on the totality of all evidence collected by officers on scene. At this time, the fifth individual who was taken into custody from the scene has been released without charges.
We would like to thank all Calgarians for their understanding and co-operation today as our officers worked to manage the large crowds, maintain public safety and minimize the disruption to surrounding residents and businesses. We continue to appeal to all demonstrators to act responsibly and protest within the laws. Anyone who jeopardizes public peace, endangers others, or participates in illegal activities, will be held accountable for their actions.
We encourage those planning a future event or demonstration to review the information on our website: www.calgarypolice.ca/protesting.