HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. — Violence erupted at a Make America Great Again rally in Huntington Beach on Saturday when an anti-Trump protester allegedly doused the female organizer of the event with pepper spray and was immediately set upon by a group of Trump supporters.

After spraying the march organizer, the man, wearing a black mask, was tackled by a group of flag-waving Trump supporters, who started punching and kicking him, according to witnesses at the scene.

The crowd then chased the man, who jumped over a fence and started running along Pacific Coast Highway, where he was detained by California Highway Patrol officers.

A handful of other counterprotesters fled the scene.

Travis Guenther, whose wife was also pepper-sprayed, said he was among those who chased the masked man and hit him with a flag that said “Trump, Make America Great Again.”

“I hit him five times with the flag over his head,” said Guenther, who yelled at the man as he was detained by law enforcement officials.

“How is your head?” he asked the man.

“Were not xenophobic,” Guenther said. “We’re not racist. We’re just proud Americans.”

Jennifer Sterling of Laguna Beach, the organizer who was hit with pepper spray, seemed unfazed by the incident, which involved a small number of protesters.

“It was a quick reaction,” she said. “There was about 12 of them.”

Sterling said the rally was not simply for Trump but also “a patriotic rally, celebrating first responders, military veterans, vice president and president.”

The noontime rally and march at Bolsa Chica State Beach drew hundreds of flag-waving supporters of President Donald Trump.

The event was slated to run from noon to 3 p.m. and was one of about 40 affiliated events scheduled nationwide throughout the day.

Though the march bears Donald Trump’s campaign slogan and organizers elsewhere are making their support for the president quite clear, Sterling said before the march that the local gathering – while pro-Trump – would have a different focus. Participants would be wearing blue ribbons to support law enforcement and donations would be collected for veterans, she said.

“We want to wave our American flag and be patriotic,” Sterling said.