When hundreds of North Bay residents poured onto the streets of Santa Rosa in late May and early June as part of this summer’s nationwide racial justice protests, officers from multiple local law enforcement agencies responded with force, injuring several protesters severely with rubber bullets and other “less lethal” crowd control weapons.
In one case, a crowd-dispersal weapon known as a sting-ball grenade broke a 35-year-old man’s jaw, causing him to go to a hospital for extensive reconstructive surgery. In November, the city paid $200,000 to a Healdsburg man who was shot with a rubber bullet in the groin while filming a May 31 protest. Other lawsuits are still ongoing.
The Santa Rosa City Council has yet to discuss the law enforcement’s response to the protests at length publicly. The earliest that will happen is February or March, approximately nine months after the start of the protests.
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