CHICAGO -- A massive anti-war rally in Chicago ended with a clash with police Sunday, May 20th. Upwards of 3,000 protesters took to the streets of downtown Chicago Sunday, trying to make their voices heard as world leaders assembled for the NATO Summit.
After an anti-NATO march, protesters tried to push their way through a police line and clashed with officers in riot gear. Protesters threw objects at officers while police used batons in response, and then worked to clear protesters from the streets.
Police said Sunday most protesters were peaceful, and say only a handful of people came with the intention of causing trouble. Police say at least 45 were arrested, including one man from the Milwaukee area. FOX6's media partners at the Caledonia Patch say 28-year-old Michael Yocco of Caledonia was arrested Saturday night, May 19th after police found knives and ammo in his possession.
Police say Yocco and another man were wearing militia outfits and flying anarchist flags from their car.
CLICK HERE for more from the Caledonia Patch website.
"We expect peaceful assembly. We expect people to chant and scream. That's their right and we just want to prevent criminal acts," Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said.
Milwaukee police officers from the Major Incident Response Team deployed to Chicago Saturday, May 19th. Chief Ed Flynn says platoons are stationed on two downtown Chicago bridges with the mission of keeping those bridges open.
Another platoon from Milwaukee is guarding the train station at McCormick Place.
"Our officers are doing a terrific job. They're well equipped and squared away. They're very disciplined and they've gone through a lot of training, and they're certainly measuring up well with their contemporaries from around the country," Chief Flynn said.
Three Milwaukee peace groups were among those protesting. They returned to Milwaukee late Sunday by bus.
Milwaukee police officers may return Monday or Tuesday.
Chief Flynn says the federal government is paying for the officers to serve in Chicago, and police have been able to maintain regular staffing levels in Milwaukee.