Philadelphia Police Toss Canisters Toward Crowd Trying to Flee up Highway Embankment

Authorities in Philadelphia opened an investigation on June 1 after eyewitness video showed a panicked crowd trying to flee up a highway embankment.

In this video, shouts can be heard as the group tries to flee from the 676 Highway. Smoke is surrounding some of the people, with some officers tossing canisters up the embankment and some protesters throwing canisters back towards police. One voice can be heard saying “I can’t breathe.”

According to a statement from city authorities, police “deployed non-chemical white smoke and CS gas (tear gas)” after some protesters began throwing stones and “rushing toward the officers.”

Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said the incident happened shortly after 5 pm, before the city’s 6 pm curfew was set to take effect.

Mayor of Philadelphia Jim Kenney said police “made the decision to deploy tear gas to encourage the crowd to disperse. While I regret that it came to that, and I am disturbed by the footage that I’ve seen, I support decisions made by the Department to resolve today’s activity.” Credit: Elias Sell via Storyful