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10 Injured After Clash Of Right-Wing And Left-Wing Groups At State Capitol

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Police tape and protest signs at the state Capitol on Sunday, June 26, 2016, after violent clashes broke out between demonstrators and counter-protestors during a right-wing extremist rally.

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

UPDATE June 27 10:56 a.m.: According to the Sacramento Police Department, a loaded handgun was located on the State Capitol grounds, after a protest turned violent Sunday afternoon. 

Officials say the firearm was turned over to police custody. There were over 100 officers present from the Sacramento Police Department during the incident.

UPDATE 7:35 p.m. The Sacramento Fire Department says nine of the ten injured people were taken to local hospitals. Two injuries were considered life-threatening.

A tenth person was injured, but refused treatment.

UPDATE 5:55 p.m. The Sacramento Fire Department now says nine men and one woman were injured in today's clash between extremist groups at the California State Capitol. The injured are between the ages of 19 and 58.

UPDATE 4:43 p.m. The Sacramento Fire Department says seven people were injured during a clash between two groups of protesters at the California State Capitol Building.

Chris Harvey with the fire department says two groups of extremists began fighting just before noon.

"Neo-Nazis were planning a rally. Before the rally could even start, a number of leftist groups and anarchist groups met them there and there was a violent fight and a number of smaller melees and fights that spun off of that."

CHP Officer George Granada says 30 members of the permitted group arrived about ten minutes before noon at the south steps of the Capitol.

"Word spread quickly. So that group of 400-plus made their way to this side of the capitol from whatever location they were at. So, you had a group of individuals running across the grounds here, made contact with them, and immediately a fight broke out."

Harvey says seven people were taken to local hospitals.

"Two of those patients met critical trauma criteria for their stab wounds, so these are considered life-threatening stab wounds."

 Bloody Clothes Capitol Protest AN 20160626 P

Bloody clothes and police tape are all that's left of a violent clash at the Capitol.Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Sacramento Police responded to the area and blocked streets around the capitol, but did not make any arrests.

Matthew Heimbach is  chairman of the Traditionalist Worker Party and told the Los Angeles Times that his group and the Golden State Skinheads organized the Sunday rally.

Vice chairman Matt Parrott, who was not present at the Sacramento rally, says it was a peaceful march and blamed "leftist radicals" for instigating the violence. Heimbach says that in the clash, one of their marchers had been stabbed in an artery and six of the "anti-fascists" had also been stabbed.

A post recently uploaded to site of the Traditionalist Youth Network says TWP members planned to march in Sacramento to protest against globalization and in defense of the right to free expression. They say they expected to be outnumbered 10-to-1 by counter-protestors.

The Los Angeles Times and Associated Press contributed to this report.

UPDATE 2:24 p.m. -- The Sacramento Fire Department reports that protesters have now left the state Capitol after a rally turned violent today. Multiple people were stabbed as counter-protesters clashed with demonstrators during a right-wing extremist rally.

The fire department says a total of seven people have been transported to area hospitals.

Original Post: Five people have been taken to area hospitals -- some with critical stab wounds, according to a tweet from the Sacramento Fire Department, after a "mass casualty incident" during a rally at the state Capitol today.

The Los Angeles Times reports that a neo-Nazi group had been planning an event at the site, and counter-protests had been taking shape on social media.

Bob Moffitt

Sacramento Region Reporter

Bob reports on all things northern California and Nevada. His coverage of police technology, local athletes, and the environment has won a regional Associated Press and several Edward R. Murrow awards.   Read Full Bio 

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