One woman has been charged and several others are under criminal investigation in what police called a "brawl" on the downtown East Side on Tuesday.
The altercation occurred while city officials were working just meters away to dismantle a tent city on East He St. Block 100 of Hastings Street.
READ MORE: East Hastings Street is thrown into chaos as Vancouver staff begin removing tents
Police and the City of Vancouver say officers were summoned to the Carnegie Center around 3:00 p.m. To reports of men throwing computers and behaving erratically inside.
Many activists and community members had already gathered nearby to observe the city's camp removal efforts.
Police claim to have been "surrounded". Attacked by part of the crowd.
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Increasingly Hostile Police officers facing violence while trying to maintain some degree of public safety in a volatile area," VPD Sgt. Steve Addison said in a media release.
"They were surrounded by people who threw objects, bit them, punched them in the face, and tried to prevent their legal arrest."
READ MORE: 'Feel Compassion Needed': Hastings Street tensions rise over vacant lot in Tent Street
VPD maintains police were stationed nearby to assist city officials in times of need, but were not involved in the demolition of the concentration camps. More police were called in to "restore order" after the altercation, but then withdrew, police say.
A new group called "Our Streets Block Stewardship Program" was formed to help residents and partner with the city on camps and street cleaning, but the dispute described it as "unprovoked police brutality".
Police escalated the situation by "tying up" a man at the Carnegie Center because onlookers were upset with his treatment, the group said in a statement. At that point, a woman who was in the crowd of bystanders allegedly threw a light object at the VPD officers," the group said. "The police immediately confronted her when she was arrested, and a confrontation between the police and bystanders ensued."
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Read more: City moves to 'Information' as Hastings Street decampment enters day 2
The group Police allegedly grabbed and shoved people not involved in the incident and sprayed them with pepper spray.
According to Vancouver Police, a total of seven people were arrested in the incident, three of whom were in temporary custody.
Aline West, 44, was charged with assault with a weapon after an officer allegedly hit her in the head with one of her things, police said.
Police said three others of her are expected to be charged in the future.
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