San Francisco protests over fatal police shooting blocks Market Street, traffic 

click to enlarge Andrea Koskey/The Examiner - ANDREA KOSKEY/THE EXAMINER
  • Andrea Koskey/The Examiner
  • Andrea Koskey/The Examiner

A group of about 150 protesters who gathered at San Francisco's Dolores Park Tuesday night have been on the move, traveling through the city's Castro and Mission districts before arriving at Civic Center about an hour later.

The demonstration is in response to the fatal police shooting of 19-year-old Kenneth Harding Jr., who allegedly ran from police and fired shots after officers attempted to detain him while conducting a fare enforcement at a San Francisco Municipal Railway light-rail stop.

The group departed the park at 6 p.m. and traveled west on 18th Street before turning right on Church Street.

Some of the protesters carried a banner reading "They can't shoot us all," and others chanted, "How do you spell murder? S-F-P-D."

About two dozen police officers on foot and motorcycles, as well as in SUVs, were corralling the crowd as they marched through the Castro and blocked the group's path down Church Street.

The group changed course and arrived at the Muni station at Market and Castro streets, where they attempted to break Muni ticket machines and overturned garbage cans.

When the group left the station, they marched past Dolores Park to the Police Department's Mission Station at 17th and Valencia streets. One person threw a hammer at the station's window but failed to cause any damage. Another attempted to splash the station in paint, and a third dropped a smoke bomb.

The protesters headed toward downtown and were marching east down Market Street toward the Civic Center station as of 7:15 p.m. Market Street was mostly blocked in the area by a combination of the protesters and police.

Harding was shot at about 4:45 p.m. after running from officers who had taken him off a Muni light-rail vehicle at Third Street and Palou Avenue for suspected fare evasion, police said.

During the chase, Harding allegedly pulled out a handgun and shot at pursuing officers, according to police. Two officers returned fire, striking Harding, who later died at a hospital.

Harding, a Seattle resident, was also a parolee who was being sought as a person of interest in a homicide that occurred in that city last week.

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