MINNEAPOLIS - Police have removed the protesters from the West Bank light rail station just ahead of the Super Bowl.
A small group of protesters started blocking east and westbound light rail trains on the Green Line at the station near the Super Bowl at about 3 p.m.
When police moved in at about 4 p.m. to begin detaining people, most left and a few who seemed prepared to be arrested stayed, according to a KARE 11 crew on the scene. Police appeared to be leading demonstrators away bound with zipties, and by about 4:15 p.m. the tracks were cleared.
Police continued struggling to remove one protester who was locked to the railing with a bike lock.
Police moved in and protesters immediately melted away except for a select few who seem prepared to be arrested. They seem well organized. pic.twitter.com/bVYOV0azRJ— bengarvin (@bengarvin) February 4, 2018
Demonstrators were wearing shirts that said "You Can't Play With Black Lives." On Twitter, Black Visions Collective, an account of Black Lives Matter Minneapolis, said, "YOU TRY TO SHUT US OUT, WE SHUT YOU DOWN."
Protesters linked arms and at least two locked themselves to the railing by their necks with bike locks.
Metro Transit spokesperson Howie Padilla says about 40 people were on the train that was blocked. He said they are sending in buses to make sure ticketholders get to the game on time, and that everyone else gets to their destination.
Earlier in the week Black Lives Matter Minneapolis sent a release about Super Bowl counter actions that read, "The NFL and the City of Minneapolis have failed to provide critical resources to vulnerable communities and have increased potential harm to residents through intensified surveillance of people of color and immigrants, a ban on access public transportation without a Superbowl ticket, and increased violence on Black trans women and sex workers."
Protesters read demands including de-militarization of police and ending the cash bail system.