Violent protests shut down Stone Mountain attractions

Violent protests shut down Stone Mountain attractions

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Ben Gray
Georgia State Patrol troopers with long guns monitor the entrance to Stone Mountain Park on Saturday morning, April 23, 2016 where a white power protest and two counter protests were scheduled. Ben Gray / bgray@ajc.com

Violent protests surrounding a white power rally at Stone Mountain have caused officials to shut down public attractions at the park.

The cable car and amusement area are being shuttered as a precaution to keep visitors safe, said John Bankhead, spokesman for Stone Mountain Park Police. The park remains open.

Bankhead said it is the first time in memory that the private attractions have been halted due to protests at the DeKalb County park.

“We’ve never had this issue before,” Bankhead told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We want to keep people safe.”

Nine counter-protesters have been arrested Saturday as they clashed with police in increasingly-tense confrontations. The demonstrators were there to speak out against a white power rally. In an attempt to reach that rally, that fanned out through the park’s wooded trails. Some threw fireworks and rocks at police and barricade was set ablaze.

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