After demonstrators beheaded four Confederate statues in Portsmouth, Virginia, on Wednesday night, they pulled one of the statues down using a tow rope, the Virginian-Pilot reported.
The toppled statue then landed on a protester’s head and cut it open, the paper said.
Louie Gibbs, vice president of the Portsmouth NAACP, said the man — who is in his 30s — lost consciousness, the paper added. The man was taken to a hospital, the Virginian-Pilot reported.
After the incident, demonstrators stopped to offer prayers and a quiet moment of solidarity before police told them they needed to leave the area, the paper said.
A marching band played as the statue fell:
Protesters take down pieces of Portsmouth’s Confederate monument
The president of Black Lives Matter 757 told WAVY-TV he could see part of the man’s skull and that he was “convulsing on the ground”:
Police Chief Angela Greene called it “a very unfortunate incident that should’ve never escalated to this,” WAVY reported.
Greene also told the station she gave no order to officers to ignore the destruction of the monument but rather that a local elected official directed police to let the vandalism continue.