Fight breaks out between dueling protests in downtown Tyler

Local News

TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Two protests were scheduled in downtown Tyler Sunday afternoon, which led to a fight between people on both sides.

One group expressed support for Portland and was protesting the deployment of unidentified federal agents while another was a “Back the Blue” event supporting the federal officers who were placed in Portland as a precaution.

East Texas rancher Hank Gilbert, who is the Democratic challenger for Gohmert’s seat in November, organized one of the rallies, in his words to, “stand up against this unconstitutional occupation of American cities.”

He had been promoting the rally on his Twitter and Facebook feeds.

At the same time, a larger group of Trump supporters, some armed, showed up on the square and overwhelmed Gilbert’s event.

As the protests devolved, a KETK camera crew witnessed a brawl between several people. Two videos can be seen below.

It has been edited to take out curse language.

Hank Gilbert identified one of the men as his campaign manager, Ryan Miller.

He claimed the individuals who started the fight were Gohmert supporters and called on him “immediately denounce the violence that his supporters wrought today on peaceful protesters.”

Tyler police were on the scene to defuse the situation.


East Texans are gathering in downtown Tyler to show their support for protesters in Portland and their opposition to federal agents policing that city in defiance of local authorities.

Hank Gilbert, the Democrat running against Rep. Louie Gohmert in the upcoming election, is one of the organizers of the Tyler protest and has slammed President Trump for ordering the federal agents to major U.S. cities, which Gilbert called an “unconstitutional overstep.”

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