More than 100 protesters angered by the two-year prison sentence handed down to former Bay Area Rapid Transit police officer Johannes Mehserle were arrested Friday night after marching from downtown Oakland into a residential area, where mobs smashed about a dozen car windshields and a police officer’s gun was snatched, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The marchers headed out of downtown after a peaceful rally outside City Hall, where as many as 500 people sang songs and heard speeches denouncing the sentence Mehserle received that day for the fatal shooting of unarmed transit rider Oscar Grant.
About 200 demonstrators surged into the streets as darkness fell. Several in the crowd said they had been headed to the transit station where Mehserle shot Grant early on Jan. 1, 2009. As word of the destination spread, officials closed the station, allowing trains to go through but not to stop. Police penned in the marchers about a mile from the station.