Last week, thousands of Montrealers marched through the streets to protest police brutality and systemic racism. The peaceful demonstration — sparked by the murder of George Floyd at the hands of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin — was followed by a destructive incident after police used tear gas to disperse crowds. A small group of individuals vandalized buildings and looted a music store. This week, Montreal police released over two dozen photos of individuals who were suspected of committing crimes in downtown Montreal. 

In all, 11 people were arrested on the evening of May 31, police said.

Officers are hoping members of the public will contact the authorities if they recognize the suspected perpetrators.    

Most of the people in the surveillance photos appear young. Some have hoods pulled over their heads while others are wearing masks. Some are holding guitars.  

SPVM has set up a team to investigate the looting and vandalism that occurred after the protest.

They invite anyone who has any information about these events or the individuals who participated in them to contact Info-Crime Montréal at (514) 393-1133.  

Steve's Music Store on rue Sainte-Catherine was hit particularly hard as looters crashed their way into the business and made off with a number of guitars and other merchandise.

Despite the damage, Lenny Lanteigne, the manager of the 55-year-old music store, was supportive of the protesters.

He told Narcity Québec that "there is a distinct line between this noble and necessary event and the fact that a few people decided to take advantage of the events that night to smash windows and steal several guitars."

"We must respect the fact that the people who demonstrated did so for the right reasons and those who decided to steal guitars had nothing to do with those who wanted to demonstrate for the right reason. These are two completely different worlds," he said.

There was an outpouring of support for the business on its Facebook page.  

"A thousand Thank yous for all your kinds words!" the store wrote on June 1.

Montreal's second peaceful protest against racism and police brutality in June drew thousands of people.

A third demonstration, a rally for black trans and queer lives, is planned for Sunday, June 14.

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