Days after former President Donald Trump was indicted by a grand jury in Manhattan, his supporters in Southern California—specifically, in Orange County—hit the streets to protest the decision. And in a callback to classic Trump rallies and events, violence ensued.
On Saturday afternoon, a group of about 40 demonstrators assembled near Huntington Beach Pier, shouting “God Bless Trump!” and waving “Make America Great Again” flags. The Los Angeles Times reported from the ground that attendees referred to the “fake indictment” which, they proclaimed, is “just a sham.”
While the 30-count indictment remains sealed and its content, including charges against Trump, are unknown as of Monday, the grand jury looking at this case had heard evidence on 45’s alleged involvement in a late-2016 campaign hush-money scheme to pay off adult film performer Stormy Daniels, with whom he apparently had a sexual tryst. The indictment on Friday is only one of several legal challenges looming over the 2024 presidential hopeful.
On Saturday afternoon in Orange County, not everyone was on the same page as the indictment protestors. Just after noon, two pro-Trump demonstrators became entangled in a physical clash that ended with them being hit on the head with skateboards. One victim was hospitalized with minor injuries and the other remained mobile after the blow; a victim was bleeding from the head, the Times reported.
Huntington Beach police initially detained two men thought to be involved in the tussle. A spokesperson for the department, Jessica Cuchilla, said that one man was taken into custody. The Times later reported that 33-year-old Daniel Salvador Angulo Serrano of San Bernardino was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon.
One demonstrator, 18-year-old Joseph Edward, insisted that the attack was “unprovoked.”
“It was intended to be peaceful,” He said. “We don’t want this. We don’t want it to happen again.”
Despite the melee, the direct action on the boardwalk was deemed to be mostly a success. “We did have, for the most part, a peaceful protest,” said Jennifer Carey, public affairs manager for the city of Huntington Beach.
Stay on top of the latest in L.A. news, food, and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today.