Catalan police in tears as they shield referendum voters from Civil Guard (VIDEOS)

Catalan police in tears as they shield referendum voters from Civil Guard (VIDEOS)
Catalan police have been forced into multiple standoffs with Spain’s Guardia Civil after widespread and often brutal violence against voters at polling stations Sunday. Local support for the Mossos d’Esquadra has even brought the police to tears.

Amid such violence and tension across Catalonia, heart-warming footage has emerged of teary-eyed members of the Mossos d’Esquadra standing arm in arm to defend polling stations from being attacked by Spanish police.

In this footage, members of the Guardia Civil can be seen unceremoniously dumping voters outside a polling station reportedly in Gavá, before the local Catalan police intervene to rapturous cheers from the assembled crowd and cries of "Fascists!"

READ MORE: Catalonia holds independence referendum amid violent attempts to thwart vote (Live Updates)

Meanwhile, footage shot at a polling station in Barcelona's Carrer de Pau Claris shows riot police kicking voters and dragging them down the stairs.

WARNING: THIS VIDEO CONTAINS SCENES OF A VIOLENT NATURE.

Over five million Catalans are expected to cast their votes in more than 2,000 polling stations across the region.

Catalan citizens also presented members of the Mossos with roses on the eve of polling day and the attendant outbreak of violence.