1968 Paris riots, police brutality

Okay, so we know rioting is neither a new thing nor unique to the U.S. I’m wondering about something specific in the May '68 riots. Is it true what I heard, that Parisian cops, at least at the time, wore capes that had lead in the hems, and that some cops were folding them up and using the lead the way an American cop uses a nightstick? Except that there was a neat loophole where this didn’t count as a weapon the way a nightstick is a weapon? Just wondering.


Parisian here, though I wasn’t born yet in '68. Never heard of it.

But cops back then didn’t have to skirt weapon laws or play such shenanigans - the government was pretty hardline back then. To give you an example, one major piece in the anti-riot arsenal were the so-called “voltigeurs”. Two cops on a motorbike : one driver, and one passenger with a long stick to clobber people in the face with. At full speed. Yup.

The CRS (that’s Compagnies Républicaines de Sécurité, the riot cops) in general were pretty brutal and truncheon-happy as well. Still are, really. Just google image “CRS mai 68” for an idea of their equipment.

Here’s a photo from the riots. No one is hiding the fact they have batons and are ready to use them.

But due to chivalry they would never hit girls.

Nah, not really.

Huh. Well, guess the person who told me that was either misinformed or having me on. Thanks for replying!