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Dozens of anti-police protesters have been swarming around downtown Denver, Colorado, setting fires and smashing windows, with authorities seemingly struggling to contain the hit-and-run violence.

Police officers in riot gear were seen guarding the Denver Police Department on Saturday night, but elsewhere across downtown Denver, local reporters described “ugly scenes” of arson and vandalism. 

Agitators are now trying to rip down a fence surrounding the state Capitol building @KDVR

— Evan Kruegel (@EvanKruegel) August 23, 2020

Police roll up on protesters as they try to take down fences at the capitol #denverprotest #DefundThePolice

— Charles Schwaebe Jr. Jr. (@TroutBoneless) August 23, 2020

Police conducted eight arrests as smaller groups of rioters have been running rampant, apparently using guerilla tactics and largely avoiding direct clashes, but throwing fireworks and other projectiles at the officers.

Downtown Denver is going stupid with the protest, they throwing fireworks at the police

— jas ✨ (@dallasjoint) August 23, 2020

Police put out another fire set in the middle of the road. The backdrop is the Denver city county building. The group breaking windows and setting fires is about 100 people. They’re moving throughout the city without any regard for the law #9News

— Marc Sallinger (@MarcSallinger) August 23, 2020

The chaos follows a public call to ‘Give ‘Em Hell’ shared on social media over the past week, urging “action and demonstration in the wake of the city council’s decision to deprive the people of Denver the right to shape their community and vote to abolish the police.”

Protesters setting fires near DPD headquarters.

— FOX31 Denver KDVR (@KDVR) August 23, 2020

A tree is on fire outside the courthouse. People are throwing rocks at a Sheriff’s Office van. Important to note, nearly all of the protesters have shields or helmets. Most are dressed in all black #9News

— Marc Sallinger (@MarcSallinger) August 23, 2020

Someone with a hand axe broke a window at a building across from DPD headquarters. A resident who says she lives in the building came down and yelled at them to stop. “This is not productive” #9News

— Marc Sallinger (@MarcSallinger) August 23, 2020

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