BREAKING: 1 Person Shot, Others Assaulted By Anti-Trump Protesters

1 Person Shot Others Assaulted By Anti-Trump Protesters

A man was in critical condition with life-threatening injuries after being shot in the abdomen during an anti-conservative protest on the campus of the University of Washington in Seattle on Friday night, KOMO-TV reported.

The protest, aimed at a speech being given by Breitbart editor and conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos at the behest of the University of Washington College Republicans, had already turned violent by the time of the shooting.

KIRO-TV reported that protesters had thrown rocks and firecrackers, among other projectiles, at police trying to control the protesters. KOMO also reported bricks and paint balloons hurled by protesters at police and other individuals during the protests.

The shooting suspect was described by KOMO as an “Asian man, about 50 years old, 5 feet 7 inches tall and 190 pounds.” Eyewitness accounts on social media said that the shooter was also carrying a knife and brass knuckles; media reports could not immediately confirm this.

The victim was shot in the abdomen behind Kane Hall, which was where Yiannopoulos‘ speech was taking place.

“Seattle has a long, proud tradition of speaking up and speaking out, but we will not tolerate violence of any kind, against any person,” Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said. “Thousands of Seattleites, including myself, will speak up and march peacefully throughout this weekend.”

While Yiannopoulos’ speech did not begin until 8 p.m., KIRO reports that protesters gathered on campus at about 6 p.m. They also said that at some point, a protest against Trump’s inauguration that began downtown merged with the protest against Yiannopoulos at the University of Washington campus.

While Yiannapoulos has been the target of protests on a number of college campuses, where he has been a popular (if controversial) speaker, early reports out of Seattle indicated that the University of Washington demonstrations were especially violent.

Breitbart said that protesters “had baseball bats and sharpened signposts confiscated by law enforcement,” and that Yiannopoulos’ speech had to be delayed from its original start time because the demonstrators were blocking people from entering the hall.

Social media reports from the event say that it was only half-full because of protesters blocking access for those who wished to attend.

On his Facebook account, Yiannapoulos issued a statement about the shooting.

“A man was taken to hospital with a potentially life-threatening wound to the abdomen,” he wrote. “We don’t know any more at this time. My prayers are with the victim, whoever he is.”

It’s too early at this hour to say who the shooter was and what he was motivated by — whether he was liberal or conservative, what his motivations were, any of that. Here’s what we do know: After a violent demonstration by the left (and far from the first one) trying to block a conservative commentator from exercising his freedom of speech and his audience from exercising their freedom of association, and after unconscionable assaults on police officers trying to control people acting illegally, a man was in the hospital with a life-threatening injury.

No matter who the shooter turns out to be, there is an inexorable truth here: Without this violent, illegal demonstration, this man would almost certainly not have been shot.

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