After police officers got rid of protesters who were surrounding a pickup truck on the streets of Charleston, South Carolina, on Saturday night, they arrested the driver and passenger of the vehicle for unlawfully carrying firearms, WCDB-TV reported.
What are the details?
Police told the station an officer noticed multiple protesters leave the main group and surround a Chevrolet truck in a parking lot.
But after dispersing the protesters, an officer eyeballed an AR-15 on the back seat in plain view, WCDB noted.
Upon further questioning, passenger Richard Ray, 59, told police there were handguns in the vehicle — one of them in the passenger side door compartment, the station said.
Image source: WCSC-TV video screenshot
The driver, 46-year-old Matthew Constantine, told police he had a handgun concealed in his waistband, WCDB reported. It was loaded, WCSC-TV reported.
Officers also found pepper spray, a wooden club, additional magazines, ammunition, knives, and a Taser inside the vehicle, the station said.
Neither Ray nor Constantine had concealed carry permits, and they were arrested and charged for unlawful carrying of a handgun, WCDB said, adding that Constantine and Ray were released on bonds — $25,000 and $10,000, respectively. They’re scheduled for an initial court date in December.
According to WCSC, if you don’t have a concealed carry permit, and you’re in a vehicle, guns can be kept only in certain parts of the vehicle, such as in a closed truck, glove box, or center console.
What did the police chief have to say?
Charleston Police Chief Luther Reynolds told WCSC that Ray and Constantine weren’t part of the protest, that their guns were seized, and investigators were still trying to figure out why the men were downtown and why they had the guns and ammo with them.
Reynolds added to the station that the incident underscores the prevailing “concern” of “danger potentially involved but in particular when it’s a busy night right in the area of the peninsula … where the protests were being held at a time when there’s lots of people.”
Protesters were angry that a Louisville, Kentucky, grand jury didn’t return murder indictments against officers involved in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor, WCDB reported, adding that two protesters also were arrested Saturday night.
WCDB added that the protest was illegal since no permit was acquired for it.
Saturday protests leave four arrested, Chief of Police wants to work together with protestors
Protesters in St. Petersburg, Florida, expanded their demonstration to harass diners along the streets on Wednesday following a Louisville grand jury’s decision not to charge officers involved the the raid that led to the death of Breonna Taylor in March.
What are the details?
A reporter for the Tampa Bay Times reported on Twitter that “Protestors are now going restaurant by restaurant to chant at diners on Beach Dr. in St. Pete. A lot of diners yelled back, starting multiple confrontations. This one was the most significant. Protestors took over a couple’s table. Not sure why they were targeted specifically.”
Protestors are now going restaurant by restaurant to chant at diners on Beach Dr. in St. Pete. A lot of diners yell… https://t.co/DKQiws1HXc
The footage in the accompanying video shows a mob of protesters repeatedly chanting, “Stand up, fight back!” while facing diners at a restaurant before one apparent activist pulls up a seat at the table of a man and woman who were seated together outside the establishment.
The woman at the table quickly stands up and says, “Nope, this is my table!” and unsuccessfully attempts to move the activist from the chair before two more activists fill the remaining empty seats while flashing signs and joining the chant. Additional activists followed and stood to surround the couple.
One activist can be heard telling the man, “why don’t you shut up?” before the first activist who stole a seat told the woman, “I’ll knock your old-a** boyfriend the f*** out.”
Another activist is then seen blowing what appears to be a bullhorn at the couple, standing from a few feet away.
What’s the background?
Protests have been ongoing in cities across the U.S. for months since the death of George Floyd in late May, and Breonna Taylor’s name has been a frequent chant of demonstrators nationwide calling for justice after she was killed during a police raid.
Initial reports claimed that the raid was executed as a “no-knock” warrant, but Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R) said during a press conference Wednesday that an independent witness reported that the police did announce themselves before entering the residence where Taylor was in bed with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, who has stated that he opened fire, believing the police to be robbers, and police fired back, killing Taylor.
Louisville was placed under a state of emergency ahead of Wednesday’s afternoon announcement that only one of the three officers involved in the raid would be charged in connection with the raid itself. The police officers’ use of force was deemed justified by the grand jury, but one officer was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment because he fired into other nearby residences. No officers were charged with Taylor’s death.
Flordia Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) announced on Monday a proposed new law that would protect drivers who kill or injure demonstrators if the drivers are fleeing a “mob.”
The move comes following the death while under police restraint of George Floyd and amid heightened tensions across the U.S. between law enforcement and protesters.
The proposed legislation will be filed for the March 2021 session.
What are the details?
On Twitter, DeSantis wrote, “Today I announced bold legislation that creates new criminal offenses and increases penalties for those who target law enforcement and participate in violent or disorderly assemblies. We will always stand with our men and women in uniform who keep our communities safe.”
Today I announced bold legislation that creates new criminal offenses and increases penalties for those who target… https://t.co/WiPAeCn7gA
DeSantis released the proposal on Monday. It targets protesters and increases existing penalties for such actions as “toppling monuments or blocking roadways,” Insider reported.
The bill, titled the “Combatting Violence, Disorder and Looting and Protecting Law Enforcement Act,” would also criminalize certain road-blocking protests, and violation of the law would create a third-degree felony for those who “obstruct traffic during an unpermitted protest, demonstration or violent or disorderly assembly.”
In the proposed law is a new protection against liability for drivers who kill or injure protesters if they are “fleeing for safety from a mob.”
A portion of the proposal reads, “Driver is NOT liable for injury or death caused if fleeing for safety from a mob.”
Protections for police officers
The proposed law would also include protections for individual police officers and departments at risk of losing funding.
“Florida cities that enact any legislation aimed at reducing funding allocated to their police forces amid activists [sic] call to ‘defund the police’ would have their access to state grants and aid revoked,” Insider reported.
The bill, if passed, would deny bail to any persons arrested for a crime “during a violent or disorderly assembly” until their first court appearance.
Further, the Republican governor is calling for a mandatory six-month sentence for any persons convicted of striking a law enforcement officer “during a violent or disorderly assembly.”
A “violent or disorderly assembly,” according to the bill, is defined as a group of seven or more people who are “involved in an assembly and cause damage to property or injury to other persons.”
‘I will not allow this kind of violence’
During a Monday press conference, DeSantis said, “Our right to peacefully assemble is one of our most cherished as Americans, but throughout the country we’ve seen that right being taken advantage of by professional agitators, bent on sowing disorder and causing mayhem in our cities. I will not allow this kind of violence to occur here in Florida.”
He also added, “[The law will] require a felony if you incapacitate any of the roadways. We see people take over interstates. That is absolutely hazardous. It’s not fair to motorists who get caught up in that, so that will be unacceptable.”
In May, a protester jumped on the hood of a vehicle during a demonstration in Minneapolis.
Video footage of the incident showed a driver attempting to move through the crowd that swarmed the vehicle. As the driver accelerated, the protester was forced to get off. The driver, according to reports, then made a U-turn and hit the protester, knocking them to the street.
In June, an angry mob smashed the windshield of a police patrol vehicle in Florida while it was transporting arrestees to jail. Police officers were forced to retaliate and go after the rioters.
In July, violent rioters converged on the vehicle of a 58-year-old man with cerebral palsy. The man, who was just trying to make his way down an Ohio street, said that he was worried that the demonstrators would kill him.
Florida House Minority Leader Evan Jenne told Politico, “Most of this stuff is already illegal, [DeSantis] is just hell bent on silencing any voice of opposition. None of this is about policy … it’s about buoying President [Donald] Trump, who has slipped precipitously in the polls. It’s dog-whistle base stuff.”
Ignoring the repeated examples of protesters threatening violence against innocent drivers, the African-American Policy Forum said DeSantis’ proposal was trying to give drivers a license to mow down protesters.
“Ron DeSantis sending as loud a signal as possible that he is okay with, and would even encourage, anyone who wants to use their car or truck to mow down BLM protesters,” the organization wrote in a Monday tweet. “We should not understate how dangerous this is.”
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes added, “Today a GOP Senator released an ad jokingly (?) endorsing killing liberal journalists, and Ron De Santis introduced a bill in Florida making it legal to run over protesters with your car. So it’s not just randos in line at rallies.”
You may recall a viral video just as George Floyd protests heated up of a child screaming and crying in the middle of a street as adults douse his face with milk to lessen the sting of pepper spray.
Image source: YouTube screenshot
Some people deemed it outrageous that cops would do such a thing to a kid, while others wondered what the boy’s father was doing with his child at the May 30 anti-police protest in Seattle.
Well, last week the city’s Office of Police Accountability — a citizen-led watchdog group — ruled that officers didn’t violate rules when the boy was inadvertently hit with pepper spray, KOMO-TV reported.
What are the details?
“OPA’s review of bystander and body-worn video found that the boy was not individually targeted,” the report states, according to the station. “He and his father moved towards a protester who had grabbed an officer’s baton and was pushing into the police line. An SPD supervisor used pepper spray to move the protester back. In response, the protester ducked, causing the pepper spray to inadvertently affect the boy and his father.”
OPA director Andrew Myerberg defended the board’s ruling to KOMO: “It’s clearly a directed spray toward someone who is breaking a line, and that force was appropriate for that person.”
The report added that “while the impact to the boy was an unfortunate result, he was not visible on the video at the time of the pepper spraying and therefore could not have been seen by the supervisor,” the station also said.
What did Dad have to say?
During the protest, video shows the boy’s father standing with his son just behind a line of protesters and hollering at police: “Look at his bitch ass!” he yells at one point. Then — balling up his fist — he yells at a cop, “He’s ready to swing somethin’ — his d**k ain’t that big, but that’s why [unintelligible] my black ass!”
Image source: YouTube screenshot
After the boy was hit with pepper spray, his father confronted police: “Hey, you’re a bitch! You just sprayed my 8-year-old son, you whore-ass motherf***er! F*** you!”
Image source: YouTube screenshot
At a press conference over the incident, Mondo Avery seemed a tad more reserved in front of a camera and said in reference to his son, “I felt like I failed him because I couldn’t protect him.”
Image source: KIRO-TV video screenshot
Here’s a statement submitted to KIRO-TV on behalf of the boy’s family in response the the watchdog group’s finding:
We are deeply disappointed, but not surprised, by the result reached by the OPA. Today, they have confirmed that it is the Seattle Police Department’s position that the use of pepper spray in an intentional and reckless manner that it would strike an innocent child exercising their First Amendment rights is “within policy.” We understand the OPA has said it is “sorry” for these actions. But “sorry” and “regret” is not sufficient. We demand change. OPA did not address … whether the officers could have [taken] steps to prevent this from happening and, even further, no police officers attempted to render aid to the child, making any apology tough to accept. Moreover, the OPA reached its conclusions by analysis and discussion of body camera footage — tapes that were not provided to the family or their legal counsel before today. The [OPA] also refuses to identify the officers who used force in this incident. All of this undermines the claims of objectivity and transparency that the City purports to value. We continue to demand change, and this confirms that it is still deeply needed because the City of Seattle continues to remain indifferent to the suffering its police, and other City officials, have caused to black and indigenous people of color for decades, including the Avery family.
The following is a compilation video from the Office of Police Accountability showing various clips from the May 30 protest. (Content warning: Language):
Child Pepper Spray Investigation Video Compilation
The United States Capitol Police were forced to protect the house of Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) early Monday after protesters gathered outside his Washington, D.C., home.
Democrats, angry that President Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Senate have the opportunity to fill yet another Supreme Court vacancy, have made it clear they will do anything in their power to disrupt the confirmation process, or at least have their voices heard.
Well, every one of Graham’s neighbors was subjected to those voices early Monday.
According to WUSA-TV, left-wing members of the ShutDown D.C. and Sunrise movement gathered outside Graham’s house at 6 a.m. Monday morning. Protesters were seen trespassing on the property, they made noise with bells and sirens, and some even attempted to knock on Graham’s door.
Protestors standing on the lawn of Sen. Graham’s home #getupdc @wusa9 #SupremeCourtJustice https://t.co/OP2lEvFpTM
U.S. Capitol Police responded by forming a line on the sidewalk between the protesters and Graham’s house.
“DC residents will be fighting for their children and grandchildren early Monday morning, by insisting that Trump should not be allowed to fill his third lifelong Supreme Court appointment, tipping the court for generations,” ShutDown D.C. said in a statement, WUSA reported.
Protestors turned back to Capitol Police when they knocked on Senator Graham’s door. #getupdc @wusa… https://t.co/80qyX9olKs
Both protest groups were formed to advocate for progressive climate policies. However, ShutDown D.C. also states on its website, “As the 2020 election approaches we are making plans to rise up to confront the Trump administration’s attacks on democracy.”
Within minutes of the announcement of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death late Friday, protesters gathered outside the Washington, D.C., home of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Left-wing activist Charlotte Clymer tweeted, “We’re now walking to Mitch McConnell’s house to protest.”
We’re now walking to Mitch McConnell’s house to protest.
— Charlotte Clymer ???? (@Charlotte Clymer ????)1600484451.0
Clymer also tweeted the street intersection of McConnell’s house — essentially making public his private address — but that tweet was removed from Twitter because it violated the social network’s rules.
Protesters also gathered outside McConnell’s Louisville home over the weekend, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported. Democrats are angry that McConnell essentially blocked the nomination of Merrick Garland in 2016, but has already confirmed that Trump’s latest nominee will receive a vote before Election Day.
About 100 protesters gathered Saturday, the newspaper reported. The demonstrators dispersed in the afternoon after police made one arrest.
“I’m disgusted that Senator McConnell would treat this opportunity in a complete different manner than he treated the opportunity when there was a vacancy when Obama was nine or 10 months away from the election,” one of the protesters told the Courier Journal. “I’m not surprised, but I am disgusted. I think that’s appalling.”
A security guard pulled a gun on a mob of protesters that stormed a New York City federal building that houses the FBI and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the New York Post reported, citing video posted to social media.
Image source: WABC-TV video screenshot
What are the details?
The video, which was recorded Wednesday afternoon inside 26 Federal Plaza, shows a female guard who works for a private firm Paragon Systems pointing a gun at protesters who had breached the lobby, the paper said.
“It got intense,” another guard told the Post on Thursday morning. “We are out here every day putting our lives on the line so that everyone else can be safe.”
Here’s the clip, which was originally posted to Instagram:
The paper said about 100 demonstrators marched for 90 minutes to the federal building — and it all stemmed from a recent whistleblower complaint that immigrant women detained in Georgia received hysterectomies without consent.
Police told WABC-TV that the Abolish ICE demonstrators forced their way into the lobby of the building.
More from the Post:
Protesters — some carrying signs reading “ICE & DHS agents of genocide” — occupied the lobby, clapping and chanting as they squabbled with news photographers, incorrectly claiming that they were not allowed to take their photos without “consent.”
The walkway leading to the building was spray-painted “FREE THEM ALL” and a security booth was tagged “QUIT YOUR JOB!!” as a lone officer sat inside it.
And the doors at its Duane Street entrance were smashed and covered with plywood Thursday.
Image source: WABC-TV video screenshot
The paper noted that the incident involving the security guard pulling her gun occurred toward the end of the protest and demonstrators left in about 20 minutes.
The Post said that neither Paragon — which provides security at federal buildings around the country — nor ICE immediately returned messages. But the New York Daily News noted that Federal Protective Service said the incident is under investigation.
So far no arrests have been made in the incident, WABC reported.
A group of women held a protest outside House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) San Francisco home on Thursday, stringing a tree outside with hair dryers and chanting about freedom as the Democrat faces backlash for being busted in a salon in violation of the city’s coronavirus restrictions while citizens are prohibited from doing so.
What are the details?
In footage taken by local CBS affiliate KPIX-TV, the demonstrators can be seen hanging blow dryers, an American flag, and other adornments from the tree to create their display. Some of them wore rollers in their hair, and one can be heard declaring, “It’s a freedom tree, everybody!”
KPIX producer Bobby Tooke posted the footage on Twitter, reporting, “Protestors gather outside of @SpeakerPelosi house in #SanFrancisco. They chant about freedom and place hair dryers on a tree.”
HAIR DRYER PROTEST:
Protestors gather outside of @SpeakerPelosi house in #SanFrancisco. They chant about freedom an… https://t.co/tH16OFTn1J
Another clip of the protest shared by the San Francisco Chronicle shows a demonstrator telling the group, …”To gather, to make sure everybody has an opportunity to earn a living and feed their families.” The women then cheer and another adds, “The government needs to stay out of it.”
Reporter Jessica Christian tweeted, “None of these demonstrators in front of Nancy Pelosi’s home are salon owners or workers. They’ve all described themselves ‘angry salon customers’ who want to get their hair and nails done.”
Demonstrators have formed a hand-holding circle around a tree with blow dryers and hair curlers hanging in front of… https://t.co/N9gTqrlqxY
Pelosi was caught visiting eSalon in San Francisco on Monday during an appointment solicited by her assistant with a stylist who rents a chair from the salon that has been shut down for months due to the city’s stringent coronavirus regulations. The owner of eSalon, Erica Kious, called Pelosi’s actions a “slap in the face,” saying her business would likely not survive due to local regulations imposed by Democratic leaders.
The speaker’s salon visit — which was first reported by Fox News — drew widespread backlash, but Pelosi was defiant when asked about it on Wednesday, blaming the salon and calling for them to apologize to her.
“I take responsibility for trusting the word of the neighborhood salon that I’ve been to over the years many times,” Pelosi told reporters. “And that when they said ‘We’re able to accommodate people one person at a time’ and that we can set up that time, I trusted that. As it turns out, it was a setup, so I take responsibility for falling for a setup.”
She insisted, “I think that this salon owes me an apology, for setting [me] up.”
Black Lives Matter protesters, many of whom participated in the March on Washington, shut down major highways across the nation’s capital city Friday night. Videos taken of protesters showed them harassing motorists and police.
What do the videos show?
One disturbing video showed protesters surround a police vehicle and seemingly try and rip that police officer from the vehicle. The video shows protesters attempt to open the vehicle door as the officer inside fights back.
A loud “pop” is then heard, though it was not clear where the sound came from or what made the sound.
(Content Warning: The following video contains strong language):
#DCProteststh – crowd just surrounded this law enforcement vehicle and tried to open its doors & attack, the office… https://t.co/8bpfpM9wFF
People from across the nation gathered in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday for the 57th March on Washington, commemorating the 1963 March on Washington during which Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famed “I Have A Dream” speech.
According to the Washington Post, hundreds of demonstrators stayed in the city after festivities for the March on Washington had ended. Protesters temporarily blocked several major roadways, including entrances and exits into the city.
One protester told the Post their goal was to “choke the city.”
From the Post:
Most of the protesters at Ninth Street wore all black, and many wore goggles and helmets on their heads. One person carried a bat, and another man wore what appeared to be a bulletproof vest.
Blocking highways is a protest tactic regularly used by Black Lives Matter protesters.
Benjamin Jealous, former president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, told the Wall Street Journal that blocking highways is used by demonstrators “who feel like they have no other way to get their community and the world to stop and take notice of what’s happened.”
Unfortunately, though, blocking roadways can have deadly consequences.
Kelley Paul, the wife of Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), delivered a blunt message to the media and Joe Biden’s campaign for refusing to denounce the “bloodthirsty mob” that attacked her and Sen. Paul.
What’s the background?
Kelley’s comments came after she and her husband were surrounded by an angry mob upon leaving the White House early Friday morning, where they watched President Donald Trump give his acceptance speech for the Republican presidential nomination.
Video of the tense situation showed a large crowd of protesters screaming at the Pauls and shoving police officers who were protecting them.
But the media largely ignored the violent nature of the mob. The Associated Press said, “Sen. Paul complains about ‘angry mob,'” while NPR called the protesters “peaceful.”
What did Kelley say?
Kelley told Fox News host Tucker Carlson that the protesters were anything but peaceful.
According to Kelley, the “bloodthirsty mob” threatened that “they were going to ‘eff us up.'”
“At first I was trying to look in their eyes and trying to have any kind of reason or to see someone as a human being and I realized they did not see us as human beings,” Kelley explained. “I really thought that we were going to lose our lives. I thought someone was going to throw a brick. It was the most terrifying moment of my entire life.”
Then Kelley shared her message for the media and the Biden-Harris campaign.
“I am furious,” she said. “I’m furious that Biden and Kamala Harris are not denouncing this. You tell me if you are surrounded by a mob, that will not let you move, that is screaming in your face, that is holding you completely hostage, and you cannot walk to your hotel and you are on a dark street, you tell me that’s not violence. You tell me that is not an attack.”
Shockingly, Sen. Paul added that he thought the mob was going to kill him and his wife.
“I truly believe we would have been killed,” Paul said. “The police saved our lives because these thugs would have killed us. They would have stomped us and killed us.”
Violent protests in Portland, Seattle, and Chicago have made headlines for months. In those Democrat-controlled cities, far-left protesters riot, loot, and cause widespread destruction that costs the city and businesses millions of dollars.
Last week, Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) quietly took action to prevent similar chaos from happening in The Volunteer State.
What are the details?
During a special session convened by the governor, the Republican-controlled General Assembly passed HB8005, a bill that significantly increases the criminal punishment for violent and disruptive protests.
Most notably, the new law now states that those who illegally camp on state property would now face a Class E felony, punishable by up to six years in prison, rather than a misdemeanor. Felony convictions in Tennessee result in the revocation of an individual’s right to vote.
The bill also imposes a mandatory minimum 45-day hold if convicted of aggravated rioting; enhances the fine for obstructing emergency vehicles from accessing highways; requires a court to order restitution for damaging state property; and creates a Class C felony offense for aggravated assault against a first responder — which carries a $15,000 fine and mandatory minimum 90-day prison sentence.
Lee signed the bill into law on Thursday without a press conference, the AP noted.
The bill, introduced by state Rep. William Lamberth (R), became necessary after months of protests at the state capitol, which the bill said “have resulted in vandalism and defacement of property, overnight camping on public property in violation of state law, and other risks to public safety,” WZTV-TV reported.
Indeed, after signing the bill, Lee confirmed the bill was a response to violent protests earlier in the summer.
“I think what we saw was a courthouse on fire and businesses being broken into and vehicles being damaged. We saw lawlessness that needed to be addressed immediately. And that was done so,” he said, the AP reported.
What was the response?
Because the bill increases the criminal punishment of some crimes to felony status, the ACLU denounced the bill, suggesting that it could infringe on voting rights.
“We are very disappointed in Governor Lee’s decision to sign this bill, which chills free speech, undermines criminal justice reform and fails to address the very issues of racial justice and police violence raised by the protesters who are being targeted,” ACLU of Tennessee Executive Director Hedy Weinberg said.
An attorney praised a judge for putting the brakes on the Philadelphia Art Commission’s plan to remove a statue of Christopher Columbus from Marconi Plaza, where heated demonstrations have taken place in favor of and against the monument in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
Attorney George Bochetto represents a group of South Philadelphia residents fighting to keep the statue in place, and he told the Philadelphia Inquirer that Judge Paula Patrick — who issued a temporary stay — made it “crystal clear that she will not tolerate mob rule or kangaroo tactics.”
Bochetto added to the paper that the judge’s stay is “not just a victory for the Columbus Statue, [but] a victory for civilized society.”
Afterward, the city covered the Columbus statue in plywood, the Inquirer said, and a police cruiser has been stationed near the statue to make sure things stay calm.
More from the paper:
In July, city officials proposed a plan to remove the statue, arguing it threatened public safety and should be relocated “in recognition of the fact that Columbus’ legacy includes the enslavement, forcible removal, and the devastation of the Indigenous people that he encountered, and that in this current moment in our country’s history, the statue can no longer be displayed on public property.”
Those in favor of keeping the statue at Marconi say it celebrates Italian American culture in a city steeped in Italian heritage. Those against it say it’s a painful reminder of atrocities against Indigenous people directed by Columbus. The statue has been at the plaza since 1976.
The statue’s removal will be paused until the judge rules on another motion to prevent moving the statue while the case is appealed, the Inquirer said, adding that attorneys said the city cut legal corners in the case and rushed the process to dismantle the statue.
The art commission voted 8-0 — with Commissioner Joe Laragione abstaining — in favor of the statue’s relocation as long as the city report every six months on progress regarding a new location for the statue accessible to the public, the paper said.
“It’s a serious piece of art, it was a gift of the Italian government in the 1800s. It needs to be stored and protected so that something can be figured out,” Commission Chair Alan Greenberger said, according to the Inquirer. “The worst thing in my view that can happen, as many of you said, is that it stays in storage and is forgotten.”
Some commissioners questioned whether removing the statue would set a precedent for taking down other pieces of public art in Philadelphia, the paper added.
More from the Inquirer:
The commission’s deciding vote comes two weeks after the Philadelphia Historical Commission also endorsed a city proposal to remove the statue on the grounds of public safety. Commissioners said that if it were allowed to remain at Broad Street and Oregon Avenue, it would continue to be a flash point for protests, making the statue itself susceptible to damage.
“As Philadelphia — and the nation — continue to reckon with the deep legacy of racism and oppression in America, it is critical that our public spaces are seen as safe, welcoming and inclusive for all people,” city spokesperson Lauren Cox told the paper. “Philadelphia’s public art must reflect the people and spirit of our city, not divide us.”
A black police officer said protesters chanted “black lives matter” while shooting at him and punching him at his girlfriend’s Wisconsin home Saturday night.
Wauwatosa Officer Joseph Mensah posted on Facebook that protesters “tried to kill me. I was unarmed and tried to defend my property and the property of my girlfriend. We were both assaulted, punched, and ultimately shot at several times. A shotgun round missed me by inches. Not once did I ever swing back or reciprocate any the hate that was being directed at me. I am all for peaceful protests, even against me, but this was anything but peaceful. They threw toilet paper in her trees, broke her windows, and again, shot at both of us as they were trying to kill me. There are children that live there any the knew that. The irony in all of this is that they chanted Black Lives Matter the entire time, but had zero regard for any of the black children that live there or me, a black man.”
What’s the background?
Over the last five years, Mensah fatally shot three people in the line of duty, most recently a 17-year-old earlier this year, WITI-TV reported. Mensah’s fatal shootings in 2015 and 2016 were ruled justified, but he was suspended in July over the Feb. 2 fatal shooting of Alvin Cole, the station said. The Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office is still reviewing the Cole case, but Wauwatosa’s mayor called for Mensah to “transition from the Wauwatosa Police Department’s employment,” WITI said.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Mensah was suspended with pay, and the families of the people he fatally shot — two were black; one was Latino/Native American — said they plan to pursue legal action.
What happened Saturday?
Wauwatosa police said between 50 and 60 people gathered at the home Saturday to protest Mensah, where he was physically assaulted and a single shotgun round was fired into the home, the paper said.
Police added that protesters began to vandalize the home around 8 p.m. and that while Mensah “attempted to establish a dialog,” he “was ultimately physically assaulted,” the Journal Sentinel said, citing a police department release.
As Mensah went inside, “armed protesters approached the rear door and a single shotgun round was discharged by a member of the group into Officer Mensah’s backdoor,” the paper added, citing the release.
Neighbors told the Journal Sentinel they heard fireworks and loud noises near the house throughout Saturday night.
“There was a bunch all at once, which we thought were firecrackers, and then after that, there was one louder one,” a neighbor Monica, who asked that her last name not be published, told the paper. “It was pretty scary.”
Former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Sunday called the incident “domestic terrorism” and said officials “must take action”:
This is domestic terrorism. Local, county, state, and federal officials must take action. https://t.co/YF3ZhIV0bF
“To call me a murderer, without any conviction, without any charges, and then to do something like this, again, I’m angry, I’m frustrated, I’m confused,” he said during the interview, the paper reported.
Mensah added that “it’d be one thing if there was any kind of cause, whatsoever, for my actions. But I defended myself, several times. Proven that I defended myself several times,” the Journal Sentinel said.
He also said he believes he was suspended to appease protesters, WITI said in a separate story.
“They knew all about this in 2016,” Mensah said, according to the station. “They didn’t have an issue with it in 2017. They didn’t have an issue with it back in 2018. They didn’t have an issue in 2019. Now, it’s 2020. Let’s just suspend him for no reason.”
A GoFundMe for Mensah’s legal fees set up in mid-July has raised over $73,000 as of Monday afternoon. The Wauwatosa Peace Officers Association is paying for Mensah’s attorney, the paper added.
What did the mayor have to say?
Wauwatosa Mayor Dennis McBride said he would meet with the police chief and other city officials Monday morning to ensure Mensah is “fully protected and that criminal behavior of this kind will not happen again,” the Journal Sentinel said.
“The City of Wauwatosa has always supported and protected the right to peaceful protest,” McBride added in his statement, the paper said. “Last night’s event was not a peaceful protest; it was criminal behavior. If the perpetrators of this criminal behavior are identified, they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent allowed by law.”
Antifa protesters in Colorado learned a lesson on Saturday that they will never forget: Don’t attack a man in a wheelchair.
According to the Rocky Mountain Collegian, a pro-police rally in Fort Collins turned violent when Antifa protesters, wearing their signature black-clad outfits, attempted to crash a “Back the Blue” rally being held outside the Fort Collins Police Services building.
Video of the incident, which gained attention online, showed that pro-police demonstrators responded by forcing the Antifa protesters away through a nearby neighborhood.
“So, we are currently marching the Antifa commie bas****s out of the neighborhood because nobody wants Antifa in the neighborhood. Nobody wants them here, so we’re marching them out,” the man who recorded the video said.
As pro-police demonstrators continued to force out the Antifa protesters, whom they labeled “commie scum,” violence suddenly ensued. The video shows the pro-police demonstrators and the Antifa protesters brawl in a small ditch, with the pro-police demonstrators getting the better end of the Antifa protesters.
A man with a bullhorn announced, “You guys came to the wrong city, boys and girls.”
(Content Warning: The following video contains strong language):
“Antifa commie scum” get their asses handed to them in Colorado by local residents. https://t.co/CQzxlnlxbB
Fort Collins Police Services spokesperson Kate Kimble confirmed that police made three arrests and issued one situation as a result of the violence.
From the Rocky Mountain Collegian:
The Larimer County booking report shows two arrests made by officer Christopher Young and one arrest made by officer Jason Haferman. All three people arrested were charged with disorderly conduct, one person with an additional charge of possession of an illegal weapon and one with an additional charge of resisting arrest.
“We respect everyone’s right to peacefully assemble to voice their concerns,” Kimble said. “For the safety of our community, acts of violence, destruction of property and other unlawful behavior will not be tolerated.”
On the one-year anniversary of a police-involved fatal shooting of a black man, protesters descended upon the Colorado Springs neighborhood of one of the officers involved in the shooting and demanded his firing, KRDO-TV reported.
What are the details?
While there wasn’t any violence at the Monday protest, the fact that some demonstrators were carrying guns didn’t sit well with a few residents.
Image source: Twitter video screenshot
Dion Elmore told the station in a separate article that he believed such a show of force “was almost like an intimidation tactic.”
KRDO said there was at least one confrontation between the armed protesters and several drivers in pickup trucks who were blocked by the crowd.
This truck is trying to get through but is being blocked by a car and protestors. Some of them carrying guns. https://t.co/HOcJqui3jH
Another resident, Bobby Cox, told KRDO that while he and his wife were warned in advance about the protest, they were still nervous not knowing what could happen.
“You hear all these things, see all these things on TV, it’s a little scary,” he said. “At our age, we don’t want to be confronting anybody or anything like that. There wasn’t anything like that going on.”
Here’s video of the protest. The portion with the resident holding a rifle begins just after the 30-minute mark.
Content warning: Language:
The station said the neighborhood targeted by protesters is near Pulpit Rock Park where one of the officers involved in the shooting — Sgt. Alan Van’t Land — allegedly lives. The Associated Press said Van’t Land’s residence was roped off at the time of the protest, and no one appeared to be inside the house.
The outlet added that Van’t Land and Officer Blake Evenson were cleared of any wrongdoing by a grand jury for the shooting. The officers said they didn’t see a gun before shooting 19-year-old De’Von Bailey last August as he ran away but believed he had one as he was holding his waistband, the Denver Post reported.
The husband of Los Angeles County’s first black district attorney has been hit with three charges of assault with a firearm stemming from him pulling a gun when an estimated 30 Black Lives Matter activists showed up at the couple’s home demanding to see his wife earlier this year.
What are the details?
The Los Angeles Times reported that David Lacey, husband of L.A. county chief prosecutor Jackie Lacey, was charged by the California attorney general’s office over an incident in early March where he was recorded on video brandishing a gun at protestors who showed up on his front porch calling for a meeting with his wife.
On March 2, a Black Lives Matter representative named Melina Abdullah rang the doorbell of the Lacey household, and Mr. Lacey came to the door. He is seen pointing a gun during the confrontation, telling the activists to get off his porch and warning them that he was prepared to shoot them.
Mrs. Lacey later said that her husband was “profoundly sorry” for the exchange, adding, “I do not believe it is fair or right for protestors to show up at the homes of people who dedicate their lives to public service. It was just him and I in that house and we really didn’t know what was about to happen.”
In an interview released by CNN last month, Mrs. Lacey condemned the radical views pushed by some Black Lives Matters activists, including the defunding of police.
The Hill reported that following the news of Mr. Lacey’s criminal charges, his attorney, Samuel Tyre said in a statement that he was “disappointed” that his client’s actions were considered “criminal behavior.”
“We disagree entirely with their assessment,” Tyre argued, adding, “but we have the utmost faith in the justice system, and we are confident that the correct result will be reached.”
Mr. Lacey’s case has similarities to another case happening in the middle of the country which also involves a couple defending their home against protesters.
The BLM movement gained an enormous boost following the death of George Floyd in late May — two months after the incident at the Lacey household. The movement has since been joined and allegedly hijacked by affiliated groups in protests across the country, with demonstrations descending into violence, looting, and even murders.
A St. Louis couple, the McCloskeys — both of whom are attorneys — were charged last month for bringing out firearms to confront protesters who had broken down the gate to their gated community and allegedly threatened their lives.
The McCloskeys’ attorney, Joel Schwartz, released a statement at the time, saying, “I, along with my clients, support the First Amendment right of every citizen to have their voice and opinion heard. This right, however, must be balanced with the Second Amendment and Missouri law, which entitle each of us to protect our home and family from potential threats.”
A group of protesters has filed a lawsuit against the city of Seattle, claiming the police department’s anti-riot tactics have forced demonstrators to buy prohibitively “expensive” protective gear in order to continue to enjoy their First Amendment rights.
What are the details?
KIRO-TV reported that the suit was filed Monday “on behalf of five protesters who attended the July 25 protest on Capitol Hill that police later declared a riot, seek[ing] an order from a judge to stop the city from using controversial tactics on protesters, including blast balls and pepper spray.”
“Because protestors now must purchase expensive equipment to be assured that they will be able to protest safely,” the filing claims, “the indiscriminate use of weapons by [the Seattle Police Department] implicates equal protection.”
It went to on say that “each of the Plaintiffs was unable to protest for a period of time for want of additional gear necessitated by SPD’s unmitigated and indiscriminate tactics utilized without restraint.”
The plaintiffs further argue that “the continued misuse of war munitions by SPD against civilians turns the streets — a public forum and site of protest — into a pay-to-protest racket where only a privileged few who are wealthy enough or popular enough to crowdsource funds to purchase gear akin to that used by the police department they fund can truly be in the streets.”
Fox News reported that some of the items listed as necessary protest gear “included boots, gloves, helmets and gas masks.”
The Seattle City Council is currently considering plans to slash its police spending by at least 50%, a prospect that was not lost on the plaintiffs who declared, “It is chilling to the bone that this quelling is occurring at the hands of SPD — the agency whose very existence is being challenged, its funding debated this week.”
The Seattle City Attorney’s Office issued a statement to KIRO in reaction to the suit, saying they would look into the claims. The plaintiffs are asking for a judge to order the city to cease using certain “less-lethal weapons to control and suppress demonstrations,” and to pay for the protesters’ costs associated with filing the lawsuit.
Seattle descended into chaos as part of the nationwide protests following the death of George Floyd in late May, and part of the city became occupied and turned into what was known as the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone.
The police department abandoned its precinct in the area for weeks, leading to delays in responding to calls over several blocks. Multiple people were shot and at least one person was killed during the cop-free CHOP take-over, but police were eventually able to dismantle the encampment, arresting dozens of demonstrators.
Benjamin Jealous, former president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, said blocking highways is a tactic used by activists “who feel like they have no other way to get their community and the world to stop and take notice of what’s happened.”
It sends the broader public a message that “we will be inconvenienced if we allow our local government to continue to tolerate the killing of innocent civilians,” said Jealous, a visiting professor at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.
“There’s a recognition of the use of placing one’s body in peril,” said Townsand Price-Spratlen, a professor at Ohio State University who studies grass-roots organizing. The practice echoes earlier protests, including the 1965 civil-rights march on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., he said.
Unfortunately, demonstrations on highways — which almost always happen at night — sometimes have deadly consequences.
Life apparently came to an end Tuesday when an individual was tackled to a New York City street and pulled into an unmarked van as NYPD officers appeared and kept outraged protesters away from the scene.
Outspoken Democratic U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was wringing her hands about it, too, tweeting that “our civil liberties are on the brink,” and that it’s “our responsibility to resist authoritarianism”:
Our civil liberties are on brink.
This is not a drill. There is no excuse for snatching women off the street and t… https://t.co/F1wmA5qdom
Thing is, the individual was taken into custody for allegedly damaging police cameras during five separate incidents in and around City Hall Park, NYPD officials told WPIX-TV. Police told the station that arresting officers were assaulted with rocks and bottles, too.
Police charged Nicholas Stone with criminal mischief, WPIX said, but friends said the 18-year-old — a transgender woman — goes by Nikki. Cops added to the station that Stone was released with a desk appearance ticket.
Image source: YouTube screenshot
As it happens, NBC News correspondent Tom Winter — whose specialty is police and counter-terrorism — gave colleague Hayes a bit of a wake-up call regarding the street scoop:
It could also be undercover detectives from a warrant squad making an arrest with probable cause for someone wanted… https://t.co/Y9MjVqaOnZ
“It could also be undercover detectives from a warrant squad making an arrest with probable cause for someone wanted for 5 specific crimes wearing visible weapons and vests in a car immediately surrounded by uniformed police officers with NYPD written on the back,” Winter wrote.
And Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison tweeted video Wednesday morning purportedly showing the suspect damaging NYPD cameras on at least three separate occasions, WPIX said.
The #NYPD welcomes peaceful protests.
However, damage to NYPD technology that helps keep this city safe will neve… https://t.co/xp4j0IHNF7
— Chief Rodney Harrison (@Chief Rodney Harrison)1596035808.0
“The #NYPD welcomes peaceful protests,” Harrison tweeted. “However, damage to NYPD technology that helps keep this city safe will never be tolerated. These cameras are vital resources which help prevent and solve crimes throughout the city.”
Ed Morrissey of HotAir offered the following take:
The tactics used in making this arrest are not all that unusual — and to the extent they are, those are forced on the NYPD in the circumstances of the unrest. People with warrants out who aren’t inclined to turn themselves in watch for uniformed police to avoid arrest. Some police departments use warrant squads in plainclothes and unmarked cars in order to execute warrants more successfully. They go to residences, places of work, and at times to places where suspects are known to hang out in order to serve the warrants and arrest the suspects.
The fact that this woman was apparently known to be in protest crowds required a different set of tactics. To keep the officers safe, they had to arrest her quickly and get her into the vehicle before other protesters could assault them. To walk up and announce themselves and try to make an arrest would invite mob action and prevent the arrest — and in this case, mob action nearly succeeded anyway. That is why they had uniformed backup, and that turned out to be a very wise choice.
Still, WPIX said critics compared it to arrests in Portland, where federal agents were caught on video putting demonstrators in unmarked vehicles and driving off.
Mayor Bill de Blasio told the station that no federal agents were involved, but that it was “the wrong time and the wrong place to effectuate that arrest.”
“I’ll talk to the commissioner more about this today, but I think there’s a better way to get that done,” he added, according to WPIX.
NYPD pull woman into unmarked van at protest in Manhattan
In our latest installment of Leftists Losing Their Minds, we find a woman screaming at a group of New York City police officers in the middle of a street. It isn’t clear from the video what brought about her decidedly vitriolic display or when it occurred, but suffice it to say she doesn’t appear to be a fan of the Big Apple’s finest.
After unleashing a torrent of F-bombs at the group of more than 10 officers, she orders them not to tell her to “f***ing back up!”
Image source: Twitter video screenshot
Well, that apparently was too much for one of the officers to let slide without challenging her, so he told her to do exactly what she commanded them not to do: He calmly replied, “Back up.”
Introducing ‘The Or F***ing What Shuffle’
Ah, but our heroine came with a plan — and maybe a new dance move. Let’s dub it the “Or F***ing What Shuffle.”
That’s because upon hearing the officer’s retort, the enraged woman moved toward the offending cop, timing her first two steps with her holler of two words back at him — along with one final hop and one screamed word to polish it off. “Or … f***ing … what?” she yelled while apparently standing right in the officer’s face.
Can you see it now? Two steps toward your partner … then one big hop as you end up in each others’ faces and yell, “Or f***ing what?” It’ll be a sensation.
But the cops have a dance of their own
It isn’t clear from the clip what the woman did after getting in the officer’s face or if she made physical contact with him or other cops, but she was shoved backward — and then it was on. As she raised her hands and got combative, other officers stepped in and began restraining her as she screamed some more.
Image source: Twitter video screenshot
Others in the crowd couldn’t believe their eyes as she was taken away. One called the officers “f***ing animals!” while another asked, “Are you serious?”
The NYPD has been assailed from many leftward angles of late:
NYPD officers were physically attacked on the Brooklyn Bridge last week by Occupy City Hall protesters, leaving one officer with multiple fractures of his orbital bones and cuts needing 12 stitches. And when NYPD Chief of Department Terrance Monahan intervened, the department’s highest-ranking uniformed officer was punched in the face, too, court documents said.
And cellphone video caught the moment an NYPD cop fought a gang member who apparently was interfering in an arrest. The gang member allegedly put the officer in a headlock — and then the taunting began: “You just got smoked, p***y!”
A group of protesters demonstrated outside acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf’s home in Alexandria, Va., Sunday, demanding that no more federal officers be deployed to quell riots in the country.
What are the details?
The Trump administration opted to deploy federal officers to Portland recently after protests in the city turned violent.
The protesters at Wolf’s home were allegedly part of “ShutDownDC,” the same group that stalked Trump administration officials years ago to protest family separation policies at the U.S.-Mexico border, the Daily Wire reported.
The group boasted on social media Sunday, tweeting: “We visited Chad Wolf this morning to tell him to send his thugs home and to support our friends in Portland, at the border, and across the country … Chad’s neighbors joined us — awkward!”
Townhall.com reporter Julio Rosas posted pictures and videos of the demonstration on Twitter, which show dozens gathered with signs that said “Resist Trump’s Troops” and “No More Teargas.”
“We know there are no career consequences for these men and women. We know there are no financial consequences for these men and women. We know there are no legal consequences for these men and women. We must make social consequences for these men and women,” one protester, who appeared to be a neighborhood resident, is heard saying in a video.
“We must make it uncomfortable for them. We will not be good Germans. We will not be the people who sat by and watched our neighbors commit these atrocities and said nothing because their kids were home,” she added.
One speaker at the protest outside of Sec. Chad Wolf’s home complains how there’s no financial, career, and legal c… https://t.co/QRbuAIzDYe
Wolf has been critical of rioters in Portland who have engaged in repeated and dangerous attacks on federal officers in the city.
“They’re coming armed with rocks, bottles, baseball bats, power tools, commercial grade fireworks, eliciting that violence and targeting their violence on federal courthouses and federal law enforcement officers,” he said on Sunday.
It was a pretty ‘low effort’ affair
Newsweek reported that it was unclear whether Wolf was even at home during the protests, which started at around 10:15 a.m. on Sunday and dissipated shortly before noon and appeared to consist of roughly 30 people.
One protester complained that “if we had more notice about the event … a lot more people would be standing in the street right now.”
Ian Miles Cheong called it “some low effort protesting” while posting a video of the group tiredly chanting, “How do you spell fascist? DHS.”
This is some low effort protesting outside of DHS Sec. Chad Wolf’s home. https://t.co/p8BcA2IJ4G
A violent mob set fire to a justice center construction site in Seattle, Washington, reports say.
The group of rioters also set fire to a local Starbucks, which is housed on the ground floor of an apartment building.
What are the details?
KIRO-TV reported that “thousands of people” peacefully gathered in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood on Saturday morning in a demonstration of solidarity with Black Lives Matter protests in Portland.
The tenor of the protest quickly change, and began to spiral out of control by afternoon.
Angry protesters, bent on destruction, reportedly set to a construction site at the King County Youth Service Center/Judge Patricia H. Clark Children and Family Justice Center by Saturday evening.
In a statement, the Seattle Police Department said, “Approximately a dozen people … entered a construction site at the facility, set fire to portable trailers and other equipment, and broke out windows on personal vehicles in the area and court facilities.”
As highlighted by The Daily Wire, Seattle-based conservative radio host Jason Rantz tweeted, “The peaceful protesters destroyed a Starbucks and a fire was supposedly set. It’s attached to an apartment complex.”
The peaceful protesters destroyed a Starbucks and a fire was supposedly set. It’s attached to an apartment complex. https://t.co/TOHf7tQNsq
— (((Jason Rantz))) on KTTH Radio (@(((Jason Rantz))) on KTTH Radio)1595724661.0
Others in the area alleged that people were telling residents to evacuate the apartment complex, such as New York Times reporter Mike Baker.
On Twitter, Baker wrote, “Moving through the Capitol Hill, hitting a Starbucks. Smoke is coming out of the window and people are now calling for the residents above to evacuate.
Baker also added that a crowd estimated to contain around 2,000 demonstrators attracted the attention of federal law enforcement.
He also shared video footage of the burning constriction site.
Moving through the Capitol Hill, hitting a Starbucks. Smoke is coming out the window and people are now calling for… https://t.co/KUpPp1eSuc
Ian Miles Cheong, Human Evens managing editor, also tweeted about the melee, writing, “The Starbucks is on the ground floor of an apartment complex. The media does not show you the full picture because they don’t want you to realize Antifa set homes on fire in Seattle.”
The Starbucks is on the ground floor of an apartment complex. The media does not show you the full picture because… https://t.co/9yv9zmzALN
A Nashville Fire Department captain is awaiting possible disciplinary action after a series of posts on his Facebook page about race, politics, and the Black Lives Matter movement drew ire from some constituents.
What are the details?
Capt. Tracy Turner of Station 18 in East Nashville was placed on paid administrative leave this week for referring to rioters as the “stupidest people on the planet” and younger liberals as “a generation of morons,” according to WKRN-TV.
One of the controversial posts read, in part:
“What have we done? We have raised a generation of morons that think … police are evil, especially the white ones … [that think] destroying, burning, and looting people’s businesses is part of a protest … that all white people are racist and privileged … what have we done?”
Another one said:
“I’m really tired of the bulls**t. If all white people can be guilty for slavery because of a few plantation owners … then black people get to share the same guilt. There were Black plantation owners as well. So if all whites are guilty so are blacks.”
In another post, Turner took aim at Black Lives Matter protesters and Antifa, specifically:
“These Protesters are the stupidest people on the planet, other than the arsonist and looters that hang out with them … it’s not that the Anti-Fa [sic] and BLM thugs are so strong that they are able to take over part of a city…It’s that the Democrat Mayors are so weak as to let it happen. Shameful.”
Finally, in still another post, Turner said that “if you have been mistreated by someone of a different race” it’s probably because one of the involved persons was “a jerk,” not because of “your skin color.”
In response to the posts, Democratic state Rep. Vincent Dixie, who represents the district where Turner serves, said that the posts don’t give him confidence that Turner can serve in a professional manner.
“Honestly, I don’t think he should be a fireman and a first responder in a predominantly African American community,” Dixie told WZTV-TV. “I just don’t believe that because I don’t believe that he’s giving us 100% effort every time he goes out on a call and, when he sees a black person that’s in need, that he’s giving a 100% effort in order to save this person.”
Dixie told WKRN-TV that following news of the posts constituents were expressing a lack of confidence in Turner, saying things like, “How do I know that he’s going to take care of me? That he’s going to come and give me the best aid that I need in order to survive?”
The state representative said that the decision on whether to remove Turner from his post will ultimately be up to the Nashville Fire Department.
In a statement, the department said: “When Captain Turner reported for duty Thursday for his scheduled shift NFD leadership met with him to discuss the posts. They placed him on paid administrative leave pending a disciplinary panel. He will not be allowed to return to work until after that process is completed. The hearing typically happens within 10 days.”
Turner has since apologized on Facebook for his posts, explaining that he did not mean to lump peaceful protesters into his critical remarks about rioters.
Mysterious law enforcement officers triggered outrage in Portland this week after social media videos showed what appeared to be military soldiers snatch protesters off streets and take them away in unmarked vehicles without explanation.
These federal officers (?) just rushed up and arrested someone for no reason https://t.co/xcFVuoMZmN
According to Oregon Public Broadcasting, the clandestine officers belong to the U.S. Marshals Special Operations Group and Customs and Border Protection’s BORTAC. They were deployed to protect federal property as violent protests continue in Portland every day.
The officers have been operating in the city since at least July 14, according to OPB.
He was detained and searched. One man asked him if he had any weapons; he did not. They drove him to the federal courthouse and placed him in a holding cell. Two officers eventually returned to read his Miranda rights and ask if he would waive those rights to answer a few questions; he did not.
Pettibone said he still does not know who arrested him or whether what happened to him legally qualifies as an arrest. The federal officers who snatched him off the street as he was walking home from a peaceful protest did not tell him why he had been detained or provide him any record of an arrest, he told The Post. As far as he knows, he has not been charged with any crimes.
In response, Democrats are lashing out at President Donald Trump.
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, a Democrat, called the officer deployment an “absolute abuse of federal law enforcement officials.”
“This is part of a coordinated strategy of Trump’s White House to use federal troops to bolster his sagging polling data,” Wheeler claimed, the Post reported.
Meanwhile, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi likened the clandestine officers to “stormtroopers” who are “kidnapping protesters.”
First Amendment speech should never be met with one-sided violence from federal agents acting as Trump’s secret pol… https://t.co/lr5n6m2szM
Police told the station 36 people were arrested Wednesday, and most appear to have been involved with Occupy City Hall demonstrations; none were part of “Stop the Violence” rallies calling for an end to gun crimes in the city, WNBC added.
What went down?
The station said video shows a group of officers attempting to detain a man on the bridge before another man runs over and uses what appears to a cane to smash officers on their heads:
Three officers violently attacked by protesters crossing the Brooklyn Bridge. The officers sustained serious injuri… https://t.co/yM6TwQ4mGi
“Three officers violently attacked by protesters crossing the Brooklyn Bridge,” the tweet from NYPD News reads. “The officers sustained serious injuries. This is not peaceful protest, this will not be tolerated.”
Another video shows a pair of cops helping one injured officer away from the scene:
Additional footage of the serious injuries our officers sustained on the Brooklyn Bridge. https://t.co/Ja9lTpQu0G
According to WCBS-TV, peaceful unity marchers began to cross the Brooklyn Bridge and were met by counterprotesters walking into traffic and sitting down in the roadway, blocking vehicles on the bridge.
Image source: WCBS-TV video screenshot
Image source: WCBS-TV video screenshot
The WCBS images of counterprotesters on the bridge appear to be the same location where officers were physically attacked. The counterprotesters told WCBS the unity march was too supportive of police.