By ABC News
(DENVER) — One man was killed and a male suspect is in custody following a shooting at a protest in Denver Saturday, authorities said.
The shooting occurred in the courtyard near the Denver Art Museum, officials said. Police initially said one victim was transported to the hospital and their condition was unknown. Denver police later said they were investigating the incident as a homicide.
The shooting occurred at 3:37 p.m. local time, police said. The shooting followed a “verbal altercation,” Division Chief Joe Montoya said at a press briefing Saturday evening. Two guns and a can of mace were recovered at the scene, he said.
The victim was pronounced dead at the hospital, police said.
Two competing protests were scheduled Saturday afternoon at Denver’s Civic Center Park, where the museum is located. One event, called “BLM-Antifa Soup Drive,” was hosted by the Denver Communists and other groups, according to a Facebook event page. The other, dubbed a “Patriot Muster” rally, called on patriots to “stand up” and “show up” in promotional materials.
It is currently unclear if the victim and suspect were affiliated with either protest, Montoya said.
The protests drew a large police presence to the area Saturday.
“There was a large presence because we had two groups with opposing views, and we know that can always get very tense, and there’s always potential for violence,” Montoya said.
ABC News’ Matthew Fuhrman contributed to this report.
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