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Baltimore Police Arrest Injured Protester Near Freddie Gray Court Hearing

Protesters gathered outside the Baltimore Circuit Court as the pretrial hearing for the six officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray began Wednesday. BuzzFeed News reporter Darren Sands is in Baltimore.

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Updated on

Protests began in Baltimore Wednesday morning during the first court hearing for the six police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray, an unarmed black man who suffered a fatal spinal cord injury while in police custody in April.

Beginning of the protests here in Baltimore outside of the courtroom where they're holding protests for #FreddieGray

During the pre-trial hearing, prosecutors and defense lawyers argued on key motions in the case before the Judge Barry Williams, including a request to force Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby to recuse herself from the case and motions on alleged prosecutorial misconduct.

The police arrested one protester, identified by witnesses as Kwame Rose, who was apparently injured after being hit by a car.

And the @BaltimorePolice arrest @KwameRose. America.

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Brother in the Malcolm X shirt took the megaphone and is leading a march down East Lexington St. We are on the move.

Outside the courthouse, one protester was using a megaphone to talk about getting justice for Gray and how the protests would take a break until 6:30 p.m.

But Rose — a hip hop artist and social activist — grabbed the megaphone and led the protesters on a several-block march toward the Inner Harbor.

Around there, witnesses told BuzzFeed News, he was hit by a car in the street. He was injured.

Police initially handcuffed him and placed him in a van. They later removed him and put him in an ambulance, where he is being treated.

This video of Rose's arrest shows protesters yelling at police to "let him go" and Rose is heard saying, "I got hit by a car."

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Protesters chanted "take the cuffs off" for Rose while he awaited medical care.

Protesters chanting for officers to take off the cuffs for the injured guy. He's getting ready to be transported.

Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis later alleged the protester assaulted the police officer, who suffered minor injuries.

Lt. gov.:"We're here to support the city."

In an interview with WBAL NewsRadio, Davis said "this young man kicked a police officer in the face and that's unacceptable."

AUDIO: @CommishKDavis says protester arrested kicked an officer in the face. #Baltimore #FreddieGray https://t.co/MJ874n2fqj

However, some witnesses refuted the commissioner's account, saying they did not see Rose kick the officer.

@deray look at this video. Where is the kick to the face?

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Police later said that the protester was arrested for blocking a roadway and failing to leave after a warning.

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Around 50 to 75 protesters had blocked the roads, according to Baltimore police who confirmed they had arrested one person.

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There were at times tense confrontations between Baltimore police and protesters.

Baltimore's finest. Protest. 2015.

Police in riot gear asked protesters not to block the roads and move to the sidewalk.

Police line advancing on protestors #FreddieGray

Despite some tense moments, Davis and Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake commended the police department's response to the protests in a press conference Wednesday.

"Today was a good day for Baltimore," Davis said. "Protesters exercised their First Amendment rights, police gave them space."

Rawlings-Blake said officials would prepare for any future protests according to the intelligence received by police.

"We're prepared and the lawlessness we saw in the past won't happen again," she said.

Police said no tasers were used during Rose's arrest and that most protesters were cooperating with them.

Update- There has been 1 arrest. No Taser deployment. Most protestors are cooperating and not blocking roadways. (10:16a)

Darren Sands is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Darren Sands at darren.sands@buzzfeed.com.

Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at tasneem.nashrulla@buzzfeed.com.

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