A Black Lives Matter protest sparked by the death of an indigenous woman in custody has spiralled out of control in Brisbane.
Police have made several arrests at the rally outside Brisbane’s Police Headquarters, after a 49-year-old woman died in her cell at the Brisbane Watchhouse yesterday.
A group of 100 protesters, including Brisbane City Greens Councilor Jonathan Sri blocked busy Roma St, swarmed a police car, and repeatedly called for police to “let them (the arrested protesters) go.”
Cr Sri said the protest had been peaceful, until police turned the tide without warning.
“An Aboriginal woman died in police custody and police haven’t explained why or how,” he told NCA NewsWire.
“They haven’t released footage from the cell.
“Residents were protesting peacefully, spaced out safely, and without warning or negotiation police randomly arrested people, turning a safe situation into a tense one.”
Police negotiators were brought in to diffuse the situation, but that failed to work, with a police van still blocked and another being blocked further down the street outside the watch-house.
Protesters later decamped and headed for the busy M1 motorway. Police attempted to block roads to motorists for safety.
Police are investigating the cause of the woman’s death, including looking into whether she had underlying medical conditions.
Protesters could this morning be heard chanting “F*** the police”, “Black Lives Matter”, and “Blood on your hands”.