A pair of undercover police officers found themselves surrounded by angry protesters in Oakland, California, after their cover was blown during demonstrations on Wednesday night. One of the officers was photographed drawing his firearm and pointing it at protesters after they surrounded the cops.
The undercover officers reportedly had their faces covered with bandanas and were walking among the demonstrators, who were protesting the police-involved killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Suddenly, people in the crowd started shouting, “Hey, they’re undercover! They’re cops!”
Though it wasn’t exactly clear how their cover was blown, one demonstrator told KTVU-TV that he pulled off one of the officers’ bandana. When the officers tried to walk away, protesters angrily shouted at them and started to surround them.
The same protester, identified only as Dylan, also injected race into the story, telling the news station that even though he pulled off the bandana, he's white and they instead allegedly "punched a black man" and arrested him.
At one point, one of the cops reportedly shoved a protester out of his way and the protester pushed back. The officer then took the demonstrator to the ground and handcuffed him. This made the crowd of protesters even more angry as they blocked the officers in, causing the second officer to draw his gun.
No shots were fired and nearby police officers quickly responded to defuse the situation and break up the crowd.
Some protesters claimed the undercover cops instigated looting, though no evidence had surfaced to support the allegation. However, Oakland police Lt. Chris Bolton said the undercover cops were with an “outside agency” and the Oakland Police Department would look into the claims.