SACRAMENTO, June 26 (UPI) — Numerous people were stabbed Sunday outside the Sacramento Capitol building during clashes between neo-Nazis and demonstrators.
The Sacramento Fire Department confirmed the incident, which it described as a “mass casualty event.” A public information officer for the department said on Twitter that at least five people were rushed to area hospitals, some of them in critical condition.
UPDATE: 5 patients transported to area hospitals from Capitol incident, some with critical trauma stab wounds. pic.twitter.com/wO1yqlvfOA
— SacFire PIO (@SacFirePIO) June 26, 2016
He described the injuries in the tweet as “critical trauma stab wounds.”
Several others on the scene sustained cuts, scrapes and bruises but did not require hospitalization, Fire Department Public Information Officer Chris Harvey said.
“It was quite a bit of a melee,” Harvey said, after several groups had descended on the Capitol, including counter-protesters.
Photos from the scene posted on social media showed blood on the sidewalk at the nearby park where violence broke out, the Los Angeles Times reported. Police in the photos were taping off the area.
Photos and video posted on social media showed fights between people wearing all black and other protesters, some carrying signs that read “anti-fascist”, “Nazi scum” and “smash patriarchy + racism,” The Guardian reported.
Early reports said that a neo-Nazi group had planned an event outside the capital for weeks and there had been an effort through social media to get people to protest against that group.
Frances Wang, a reporter for ABC10 in Sacramento, tweeted about the incident, saying some of those stabbed were being treated right at the park.
“Horrifying…Blood spatters all over the ground,” Wang reported. “Police trying to control crowds.”
Harvey said he didn’t know which groups the stabbing victims were from.
He said victims were spread out throughout the property surrounding the Capitol. Emergency responders were called to the scene about 11:45 am. By 12:45 p.m. police had dispersed the crowds and most protesters had left the area.