Demonstrators clashed outside a Koreatown spa in Los Angeles on Saturday after a transgender woman apparently disrobed in an area reserved for women.
A few far-right protesters appeared to be outnumbered by those favoring transgender rights. Police declared the gathering an unlawful assembly in the afternoon, said Officer Frank Lopez of the Los Angeles Police Department.
Officers spread out at the scene, and an LAPD helicopter whirled overhead as demonstrators shouted at each other and, in a few cases, exchanged blows, according to social media video from the scene.
Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Nicholas Prange said one person who was assaulted sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was taken to a medical facility in a private ambulance.
The protest was prompted by an incident captured on video and shared on social media of a woman complaining to Wi Spa USA workers about a trans customer who disrobed, thus displaying her penis in an area where women are nude. The incident occurred about a week ago. The workers stood by the trans woman and said legally they cannot discriminate against her.
The story of the row was first reported by Los Angeles magazine.
“Like many other metropolitan areas, Los Angeles contains a transgender population, some of whom enjoy visiting a spa,” Wi Spa USA told the publication. “Wi Spa strives to meet the needs of all its customers.”
The spa did not immediately respond to a request for comment by NBC News.