Wisconsin protesters in standoff with police tear down two statues

Wisconsin protesters in standoff with police tear down two statues
© Getty Images

Demonstrators downed two statues outside of Wisconsin's state Capitol Tuesday night while engaging in a standoff with police.

Protesters downed two statues, one depicting the fictional "Lady Forward" and another targeting anti-slavery activist Hans Christian Heg, Wisconsin Public Radio reported. It wasn't clear why the two statues were targeted.

Photos of the incident show the Heg statue removed from its base and dumped in a nearby body of water.

ADVERTISEMENT

Gov. Tony EversTony EversWisconsin governor declares emergency amid surge in infections Poll worker fired for not wearing a mask sues Wisconsin governor Coronavirus lockdowns work MORE (D) released a statement on Wednesday addressing the demonstration, which he called a "stark contrast" to recent nonviolent protests in the state after it was revealed that a state senator was assaulted by protesters while filming the gathering.

"The people who committed these acts of violence will be held accountable," Evers said.

"We also cannot allow ourselves to forget the reason why these protests began: because of the murder of George Floyd, of Breonna Taylor, of the many Black lives taken before them, and because racism and structural inequality still pervade this country."

ADVERTISEMENT

The death of Floyd, an unarmed black man who died at the hands of Minneapolis police late last month, as well as the deaths of Taylor, an EMT who was killed by police in her home, Rayshard Brooks and Ahmaud Arbery have sparked nationwide protests over police brutality and racism. 

Video of Floyd's death, which first drove protesters to the streets, showed a white officer kneeling on Floyd's neck for around eight minutes while he pleaded for help.

Protesters around the country have shifted to tearing down statues of members of the Confederacy, while statues of other historical figures such as Christopher Columbus have also been the target of vandalism and destruction.