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A look back at the St. John's Riot

On April 5, 1932, a riot took place in St. John's.

Protesters angry with the government of the day stormed the Colonial Building smashing windows causing several injuries, and causing Prime Minister Sir Richard Squires to flee the building.

There was a group heading to the Colonial Building calling on the Legislature to investigate certain charges made against the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State.

By 7:30 p.m. that evening the Prime Minister left the building surrounded by 10 or 12 men.

Just as the Prime Minister got to the waiting car he was recognized and the crowd made a rush. Men followed the car to a residence, the Prime Minister escaped through the back door.

About 8:30 p.m. the Inspector General escaped through the rear of the building.

Law enforcement enforcement of the city was turned over to the authority of ex-service men following the riot.

When Squires was forced to resign after the riot, democracy ended in Newfoundland.


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