Detroit cops in viral video speak on on why they plowed through protesters, say they “believed they could be shot at”

The Detroit cops that made headlines driving through a mob of protesters are speaking out and telling their side of the story.

The incident took place Sunday night on Detroit’s southwest side and was widely reported.

Rep. Rashida Tlaib tweeted in response:

This is outrageous. Our city fought hard to have an elected commission to oversee abuse and misconduct by police.

Detroit Board of Police Commissioners: I hope you understand the gravity of this, especially if not fully investigated, documented and addressed.

Fox News reports police say the officers in the area were trying to redirect the marching protesters along a faster route back to the park where the rally was held earlier in the day. The scene, they say, escalated after one of the protesters busted out the cruiser’s back window.

“There is this loud crash or bang to the rear of the police car. And again in their mind, as according to our investigation, they believed they could be shot at, or were being fired upon and because of that they had to take quick, evasive action,” Police Chief James Craig told reporters Monday. “When you talk about training, if you run into an ambush situation the proper course is to get out for your safety and that is exactly what these officers opted to do.”

“We don’t know what broke the window – could have been a skateboard, could have been anything,” he added. “But whatever it was, it certainly created enough concern for the officers and their safety and to get out.”

Craig also said no officers were hurt in the incident and that the department wasn’t aware of any other injuries.

He also said there were “repeated efforts by at least some of the 25 to 30 [protesters] to gain access to the inside of the car where the officers were located.”

Bass, meanwhile, claimed to the Detroit Free Press that police were trying to block the crowd from returning to the park.

He added that he tried to corral protesters around the roadblock and stood in front of the vehicle in hopes of preventing it from moving, out of concern for the other demonstrators.

“In response to that, he just floored it,” Bass told the newspaper.