A freelance reporter who films protests across the U.S. says he is leaving riot-torn Milwaukee because the situation there has grown too dangerous for white people.
“For those that are perceivably white, it is not safe to be here,” Tim Pool said in a short video explaining his decision to leave Milwaukee, where protests over the police shooting death of an armed black man turned violent over the weekend.
Rioters torched buildings and attacked police and reporters after a black police officer shot 23-year-old Sylville Smith on Saturday. Police said that Smith pointed a gun loaded with 23 rounds at a police officer while fleeing during a traffic stop. The officer shot Smith in the arm and chest, fatally wounding him.
Smith had a lengthy rap sheet stretching back to at least 2011. He was charged in a shooting last year and with intimidating a witness in that case. According to CNN, Smith’s gun was stolen earlier this year along with 500 rounds of ammunition.
Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett said that police body camera footage shows Smith holding a gun.
Pool said when he first showed up to Milwaukee he had heard reports that crowds of protesters were attacking white people. But he said he chalked that up to the type of frustration he has seen from locals towards reporters during other protests.
But he said the tension was higher in Milwaukee.
“Upon arriving here one of the first things we hear is the crowd getting angry, saying ‘what are these white people doing here?'” said Pool.
“Things started to get really tense later in the night when people started yelling ‘fuck white people; white people suck,'” he continued.
But Pool, who said he has some Korean heritage but is usually perceived as white, said he decided to leave Wisconsin’s largest city after he saw an 18-year-old white man just after he had been shot in the neck.
“There’s enough people that are screaming things about white people and reporters being attacked…that I think that for those that are perceivably white it is not safe to be here,” said Pool.
“I feel like it’s not safe or smart to be here.”
The Daily Caller reported on Sunday that several videos recorded in Milwaukee show black residents targeting whites for attack. (RELATED: Milwaukee Rioters Hunt Down, Attack Whites)
“Is they white?” one protester is heard shouting in one of the videos.
“Yeah they white, get they ass!” another man yells back.
“He white, beat his shit, bitch!” another black man is heard shouting.