Protests at GOP Convention Turn Violent

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More than 200 people spent the night in jail after an anti-war protest outside the Republican National Convention, Monday.

Some 10,000 people were estimated to have participated in the protest at the Xcel Energy Center and at least 284 were arrested.

Overall, the demonstration was said to be peaceful, but by 3 p.m., the Minnesota National Guard was called to help control a splinter group of protestors who had become violent.

The march, which began at 11 a.m., stretched from downtown St. Paul to just outside the Xcel center.

Veteran Mike Starr and his wife Sue came from Anoka, Minn. to participate.

"We don't support Bush. They won't change, of course, but we're sending a message," he told Time magazine. "We're just here for a peaceful walk. I just hope it stays peaceful."

But it did not. After the main demonstration, a few hundred protestor branched off, leading to the mass arrests.

Some GOP delegates said they were attacked by protesters while getting off their buses. A group wearing all black laid across a main intersection to block cars while others smashed windows and tore down detour signs.

Authorities say at least 130 will face felony charges.

The anti-war march was organized by the "Coalition to March on the RNC" and "Stop the War." More than 40,000 were expected to show for the event.

Sources: Minneapolis Star Tribune, The Associated Press, TIME

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