(CNN) Donald Trump on Saturday called for protesters who disrupt his rallies to be arrested, one day after altercations and protests forced him to cancel a campaign rally in Chicago.
The comments capped a tumultuous day on the campaign trail in which a demonstrator rushed a stage where Trump was speaking.
Trump also accused Bernie Sanders’ supporters of sowing unrest at his events and the GOP front-runner refused to back down from his rhetoric that some have cited as the cause of heightened tension at his rallies.
Trump’s call to arrest protesters came at a campaign event in Kansas City, Missouri, where he was repeatedly interrupted at the beginning of his address.
“I’m going to ask that you arrest them,” Trump said to the police. “I’ll file whatever charges you want. If they want to do this … we’re going to go strongly for your arrests.”
Trump said arresting protesters would “ruin the rest of their lives” by giving them a “big arrest mark.”
“Once that starts happening, we’re not going to have any more protesters, folks,” Trump said.
As dozens of protesters disrupted Trump’s rally inside a Kansas City theater, crowds of demonstrators gathered outside.
Lining the sidewalks and four corners of the nearest intersection to the theater, the protesters voiced their opposition to Trump’s policies and rhetoric, which many characterized as racist, xenophobic and fear-mongering.
Police used pepper spray at least twice Saturday night, with the Kansas City Police Department tweeting that “we had to use pepper spray 2 times outside Trump rally and arrested two people who refused to follow law.”
As Trump supporters left the venue, protesters shouted and cursed at them — and any passersby coming from the direction of the theater — calling them “f***ing racists.”
Alicia Valeanzela, who was shouting those words at people she believed to be Trump supporters, said she believed anyone supporting Trump supports a racist, xenophobic ideology.
“He’s a f***ing bigot. He’s an a**hole,” she said.
“It’s not right I’m not gonna let somebody ruin our country like that,” said the 21-year-old native of Venezuela. “People need to know that they cannot vote for Trump, and Trump cannot become our President.”
Among those targeted by the protesters’ cries were the Toates family: father Phillip, his wife and their three children, including a 10-year-old son.
“How do they know I even attended the rally? They say Trump’s all about hate, but we have not been about hate and that’s the way we got treated when we came out,” said Phillip Toates, who said he is leaning toward supporting Trump but is still undecided.
“It’s not the way I expected to be treated coming out of a rally,” he said.