Sunday, September 6, 2009

"Emergency" Curfew Protest Report: Preview

The past 24 hours have been an interesting experience. Last night, I was arrested for "contributing to the delinquency of a minor."



Distinctively absent from this video is my only statement to the camera, "I have been forbidden from speaking to the press." Just before I was arrested , I had been speaking to a journalist who was interviewing me. After policemen started detaining the two teens, who had been trying to leave as asked, one officer told me to "Sit down and Shut up!" "This man is a journalist," I said. "Are you telling me I can't speak with the press?" His reply, "You're in my custody now. You can either shut your mouth or I will cuff you and throw you in a squad car right now." It was this exchange which precipitated my (un-aired) comments to the camera.

I will post a more extensive chronicling of my experience over the next few days, but I want to set the record straight on a few points right now. From my comments on the Channel 7 news video:

"I was the adult who organized the protest. I did not encourage any minors to ignore orders from police. All of those who were asked to leave did so peacefully. The first teenager who was detained had complied immediately when asked to leave. His unforgivable sin was to turn his head my way, say “Thank You,“ hand me back the protest sign I had given him, and begin to walk away. Based on those actions, a malevolent, disrespectful police officer began screaming, “You’re being detained! You were told to leave! You’re being detained!“ About 30 seconds later, one of the young man’s friends walked back towards the group to see what had happened to his buddy. The same unprofessional public servant leapt into action again, screaming, “I told you to leave! You’re being detained!“ It was on the basis of these two detainments that I was arrested for “contributing to the delinquency of a minor.“ I spent 17 hours in jail before my arraignment with a judge, who promptly released me. I will publish a chronicle of my experiences over the past 24 hours on my blog, http://danedgeofreason.blogspot.com, where you can also find an editorial arguing my position on this issue."

—Dan Edge

1 comment:

Jason said...

Congrats for standing up for what you believe in Dan!