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Five Arrested, Taser Used During Downtown Greenville Protest

Five people were arrested, a police officer was choked and a Taser was used on one person late Saturday night after a peaceful march in downtown Greenville escalated into a confrontation with police when demonstrators voiced plans to block I-385, authorities said.

Police said one demonstrator was arrested after "actively fighting and choking a Greenville Police Officer."

A Taser was used on this person resulting in injuries typically associated with the use of a Taser, according to police. There were no other injuries, according to police.

Greenville police also said in statement that it will begin enforcing the city's rules on picketing for future demonstrations.

The demonstration Saturday was initially peaceful but deteriorated as demonstrators refused to remain on sidewalks.

The situation further deteriorated when roads were blocked and demonstrators said they wanted to shut down Interstate 385. When police stopped the group at I-385 and Academy Street, demonstrators tried to push through a line of police.

Derrick Quarles, organizer of the protest, explained why demonstrators wanted to shut down the highway in a live stream posted on Facebook Saturday night.

{"author_name":"Derrick","author_url":null,"provider_url":"https://www.facebook.com","provider_name":"Facebook","success":true,"height":281,"html":"&#lt;div id=\"fb-root\"&#gt;&#lt;/div&#gt;\n&#lt;script&#gt;(function(d, s, id) {\n var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];\n if (d.getElementById(id)) return;\n js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id;\n js.src = \"//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3\";\n fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);\n}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));&#lt;/script&#gt;&#lt;div class=\"fb-video\" data-href=\"https://www.facebook.com/derrickq/videos/10205252426785291/\"&#gt;&#lt;blockquote cite=\"https://www.facebook.com/derrickq/videos/10205252426785291/\" class=\"fb-xfbml-parse-ignore\"&#gt;&#lt;a href=\"https://www.facebook.com/derrickq/videos/10205252426785291/\"&#gt;&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;p&#gt;Shutting down I-385&#lt;/p&#gt;Posted by &#lt;a href=\"#\" role=\"button\"&#gt;Derrick L. Quarles&#lt;/a&#gt; on Saturday, July 9, 2016&#lt;/blockquote&#gt;&#lt;/div&#gt;","type":"video","version":"1.0","url":"https://www.facebook.com/derrickq/videos/10205252426785291/","width":500}

"We're sick and tired. We're not going home until our voices are heard and we get some action," said Quarles. "We're shutting down 385, because 385 is the highway that people use to come into downtown and downtown is regarded as a safe and sacred and holy piece of land."

During this engagement, five people, including Quarles, were arrested. A release from Greenville police said the group identifying with Black Lives Matter did not fully comply with local ordinances on either night of protests, but the police department permitted the demonstrations and "officers worked diligently both evenings to safeguard the demonstrators."

Police said protestors strayed from a plan they'd made with police after Friday's march and rally interrupted Main Street Friday's jazz event and "seriously disrupted traffic."

According to police, demonstrators ignored repeated directions to stop, move out of the roadway and disperse for their safety and the safety of others, resulting in the arrests.

Dexter Scarborough, 23, was arrested and charged with attempted murder, assault and battery on police while resisting arrest, pedestrian in the roadway and disorderly conduct, according to police and jail records.

Quarles, 29, was arrested and charged with creating a public nuisance and pedestrian in the roadway (three counts) and an unrelated charge of obtaining goods by false pretense, according to police and jail records.

Also charged with pedestrian in the roadway, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, according to police and jail records, were: Brandon Johnson, 31, Tenealya Littlejohn, 26, and Shatercia Neal, 25.

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