Video from the escalating protests in Dallas showed a group of people beating a man identified as a store owner who had been wielding a sword, leaving him bloodied and unconscious on the ground.
The video of the incident was captured by Elijah Schaffer of The Blaze, who reported on Twitter that the man had initially run at a group identified as looters while wielding a sword, but several people swarmed around the man and beat him. Schaffer identified the man who was beaten as a local store owner who was trying to fight off looters.
“BREAKING: man critically injured at Dallas riot,” he reported. “It appears he attempted to defend a shop with a large sword. Looters ran at him, then he charged rioters. They then beat him with a skateboard and stoned him with medium sized rocks.”
Schaffer shared a video of the attack on Twitter [Warning: the video contains violence and may be distressing for viewers]. The video captured viral attention, racking up close to 6 million views in a little more than an hour since it was posted.
Though some who shared the video claimed that the man was killed in the attack, others who were at the scene at the time shared pictures showing that the man regained consciousness after the attack, though he appeared to be seriously hurt and bloodied. The man was tended to by others who had been protesting, who Schaffer identified as “volunteer medics.”
As NBC Dallas-Fort Worth reported, the protests that started mostly peacefully on Saturday afternoon turned violent later in the day, with reports of looting and destruction in the city. Dallas was one of a number of cities to see protests on Saturday, several days after the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis.
Saturday marked the second consecutive day of unrest in Dallas as well. The NBC Dallas-Fort Worth report noted that small groups of people who were separate from past peaceful marches were seen confronting police, destroying property, and looting a number of businesses. Dallas Police Chief Renee Hall spoke out against the violent protesters on Friday, calling on those who were protesting on Saturday to remain peaceful.
— Jenna (@jennajenovich) May 31, 2020
“We applaud those who stand up and protest police brutality. Because we do too… but last night peaceful protests began but that is not how it ended. And what I want you to be clear about with me today… this police department will not tolerate rogue vandalism. We will not tolerate tearing up our city. We will not tolerate tearing up our communities…” Hall said Saturday.
The condition of the man seen being beaten by protesters in Dallas was not immediately known.