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Photos: Chaos erupts after Kevin de León shows up at his first L.A. council meeting since October

Councilmember Kevin de León showed up in the Los Angeles City Council chambers on Friday morning, appearing briefly at a council meeting for the first time since fallout from a racist leaked audio tape roiled the city in mid-October.

The question of when — or if — De León would return had loomed large at City Hall for nearly two months. His name was frequently invoked even as his seat remained empty, with protesters regularly interrupting the thrice-weekly meetings to demand his resignation.

De León, who apologized in the wake of the tape, has been adamant that he has no plans to resign. He began to quietly reenter the public sphere about a month ago, attending food giveaways, holiday meals and other community events but remained absent in council chambers until Friday morning.

Councilmember Kevin de León waves during a council meeting as other people look on.

The Los Angeles City Council went into recess after Councilmember Kevin de León showed up at the council meeting Friday morning during public comment.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

Protestors sitting in rows of seat inside City Council chambers voice their opinions.

Protestors speak during public comment in City Council chambers on Friday.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles City Councilmember Kevin de León is seated as other people talk and move behind him.

Councilmember Kevin de León, who returned to City Council chambers after a two-month absence, was greeted by protesters and supporters.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

Jason Reedy, with a baby wrapped across his chest in a sling, address the City Council.

Jason Reedy, with a baby wrapped in a sling, gives L.A. leaders an earful during Friday’s meeting.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

LAPD officers stand guard after the Los Angeles City Council chambers went into recess.

Officers from the Los Angeles Police Department stand guard in City Council chambers during a recess Friday.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

City Councilman Kevin de León, sitting at his seat marked by a nameplate.

Los Angeles City Councilman Kevin de León returns to council chambers after a two-month absence after the fallout of the leaked audio scandal.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

Jason Reedy, a frequent City Council meeting attendee, walks down the aisle of council chambers.

Jason Reedy, a frequent City Council meeting attendee, walks down the aisle of council chambers with a baby on Friday.

(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

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