MANDAN, N.D. - Following Monday morning's protest, the Morton and Cass County Sheriff's Departments held a news conference to discuss the heightened tensions.
The word "riot" was used during the briefing by Cass County Sheriff Paul Laney. He said that when you have such a large group of people trespassing and breaking the law, the line between protesting and rioting is a thin one.
"While some would like to say that this was a protest, this was not a protest. This was a riot. When you have that many people engage in that kind of behavior, inciting others to break the law, cheering others on as they do break the law, refusing to leave when they're asked to leave - that's not a protest," says Laney.
Sheriff Laney says there have been a number of peaceful protests at the State Capitol and on Memorial Bridge, but Monday's activity was not like those.