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The United States Park Police is pushing back against accusations that tear gas was used clear protesters in Washington D.C.’s Lafayette Park on Monday before President Trump’s visit to St. John’s Church.

In a statement released on Tuesday by the USPP, the law enforcement agency added that any enforcement actions were done purposefully “to curtail the violence that was underway.”

“At approximately 6:33 pm, violent protestors on H Street NW began throwing projectiles including bricks, frozen water bottles and caustic liquids,” the USPP statement claims. “The protestors also climbed onto a historic building at the north end of Lafayette Park that was destroyed by arson days prior. Intelligence had revealed calls for violence against the police, and officers found caches of glass bottles, baseball bats and metal poles hidden along the street.”

Park Police acknowledged using smoke canisters and pepper balls on the protesters.

“As many of the protestors became more combative, continued to throw projectiles, and attempted to grab officers’ weapons, officers then employed the use of smoke canisters and pepper balls when protestors did scatter from the area,” the statement added.

WIBC host Tony Katz:

“I’m on board with peaceful protestors, but if you’re throwing bricks, you’re not peaceful and you should be honest about that. Everybody in America is down with peaceful protestors. Everybody in America wants to see changes and reform. The rioting is something different.

“But show me where people who are encountering violence and seeing attacks on their home city and businesses are just supposed to sit back and take it.”

Click below to hear Tony Katz full commentary.

(Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)