Shocking footage shows a man believed to be a corrections officer driving into a group of anti-ICE protesters who were sitting outside a detention facility in Rhode Island.
The protesters were sitting on the pavement to block staff from parking at Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility, which works with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), when a black pickup truck barreled towards them.
At around 10 pm on Wednesday night, a black pickup truck drove slowly up to a group of roughly 40-50 protesters blocking the entrance to the location’s parking lot.
Shocking footage shows a man believed to be a correctional officer driving into a group of anti-ICE protesters who were sitting outside a detention facility in Rhode Island
The driver then went straight through crowd as people scream in the background and jump onto the back of the vehicle in an attempt to stop it.
Corrections officers subsequently came running outside and asked people to back away from the vehicle.
They then began pepper spraying protesters including a reporter with WLNE. The station reported that ten to 15 people were injured including one person who was hospitalized.
Other protesters are heard shouting: ‘The whole world is watching.’ A woman can also be heard saying: ‘I got pepper sprayed, please help me.’
It was reported that 600 people from Never Again Action attended the protest on Wednesday
The car can be seen creeping slowly towards the protesters outside the Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility
People are heard screaming in the background as the pick-up truck barrels towards them
Never Again Action, a Jewish protest group with organized the demonstration, posted the footage with the caption: ‘Here is HD video of an ICE guard driving his truck into us as we sat peacefully blocking the Wyatt Detention Center.’
However WLNE reported that the driver was a corrections officer from the center and appeared to be uniformed and had a badge.
In an earlier Tweet at the time of the incident, the group claimed: ‘Oh my god. An ICE Detention Center guard just drove their truck straight through a line of us sitting peacefully to block the parking lot.
‘There don’t appear to be major injuries, still assessing the situation, police are moving in *on us* now.’
There were roughly 600 protesters present from the group, which likens undocumented immigrants being imprisoned to the treatment of Jews during the Holocaust.
The group has been organizing protests outside ICE detention centers since the end of July.
People can be seen banging on the car in an attempt to stop as guards come outside to assist
Demonstrators were there to oppose ICE’s detention of migrants which has gained pace in recent weeks
Guards then emitted pepper spray on the assembled protesters in an attempt to disperse them
‘It’s just unbelievable. It was just absolutely unbelievable,’ said protester Jerry Belair, who was hit by the truck. ‘This guy just charged and tried to injure people purposely.’
Amy Anthony, a spokesman for Never Again Action, a Jewish activist group that planned the protest, told The Washington Post: ‘It was terrifying because we didn’t know what exactly his intention was.
‘It certainly appeared he was trying to hit us.’
US Immigration and Customers Enforcement have not yet responded to DailyMail.com for a comment, while attempts to reach the Wyatt Detention Facility were unsuccessful.
The confrontation comes amid a series of protests calling on Immigration and Customs Enforcement to bring a halt to their raids on undocumented migrants.
Around 100 people were arrested on Saturday during an anti-ICE protest in Manhattan which closed down part of the West Side Highway and caused traffic gridlock.
A woman can be seen being helped away and looks like she is struggling as she walks by
The protesters were sitting on the pavement to block staff from parking at Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility, (pictured), which works with Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Correction guards from the center asked people to step away from the vehicle and then reportedly used pepper spray moments which sent people running from the area
Many protesters sat on the street as they linked one another and held placards reading ‘Abolish ICE’ and ‘Close the camps.’
ICE is largely the body which removes illegal immigrants during deportations, while CBP carry out arrests at the border.
Last month, protesters went to a migrant detention center in Colorado and took down the state’s flag and the U.S. flag before hoisting up a Mexican flag and a defaced Blue Lives Matter flag in their place.
Last month U.S. authorities launched small-scale operations seeking to arrest undocumented immigrants in an apparent start to President Donald Trump’s vow to launch mass deportation round-ups across the United States.
The operation was expected to target hundreds of recently arrived families in about 10 cities who had been ordered deported by an immigration judge.
The removal operations are meant to deter a surge in Central American families fleeing poverty and gang violence in their home countries, with many seeking asylum in the United States.
‘We are doing targeted enforcement actions against specific individuals who have had their day in immigration court and have been ordered removed by an immigration judge,’ Acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director Matt Albence told Fox News when asked for an update.
Immigration rights activists have said that in many cases immigrants do not receive proper notice of their court dates.