CHICAGO, Ill. (WTVO) — An Illinois state senator is defending a chaotic “teen takeover” in downtown Chicago this weekend as a “mass protest.”

According to WFLD, Sen. Robert Peters (D-Chicaog) went out to the scene on Saturday as hundreds of unruly teens mobbed the downtown area.

“Since I’m a glutton for punishment and I’m sure I’m gonna get the most unhinged, crime weirdo replies but: I would look at the behavior of young people as a political act and statement,” Peters wrote on Twitter. “It’s a mass protest against poverty and segregation. Rest in peace to my mentions.”

On Friday night, a 14-year-old was shot as teens took over the 31st Street Beach, and on Saturday teens mobbed The Loop in events coordinated on social media, officials said.

Two teens, 16 and 17, were shot as the group jumped onto passing cars, attacking commuters.

Hundreds of teens smashed cars, blocked traffic, and fought in the streets.

Nine adults and six teens were arrested.

Peters’ comments echoed those of Mayor-elect Brandon John, who issued apologetic comments, saying that while he doesn’t agree with their actions, the teens have been “starved of opportunities in their own communities.”