North Carolina Cops Seen Pepper-Spraying Kids And Senior Citizens During Voter Registration March
The governor condemned the violence toward the protesters, but it's unclear if the officers will face any disciplinary action.
November 03, 2020 at 7:41 pm
A North Carolina police department is under fire after a video was released of officers at a voter registration rally over the weekend pepper-spraying a group of peaceful protesters and injuring minors and the elderly.
On Saturday, officers in Graham, North Carolina, were seen in riot gear violently clashing with demonstrators near a Confederate monument outside of the Alamance County courthouse, according to The Washington Post. At least eight people, including lead organizer Rev. Greg Drumwright, were arrested during the event.
“We never made it to the polls,” Drumwright said. “We believe that this interaction, this interference from local authorities, has obstructed our marchers from not only lifting up our First Amendment rights to protest, to speak out, but also our rights to vote.”
Drumwright, who led the group from a Black church to an early voting location on Saturday, said demonstrators were given 14 seconds before the police attacked them, Democracy Now reports.
“I know that we are shaken, we are tattered, we’re torn. We are pressed on every side,” Drumwright said.
“We were assembled today to have a peaceful demonstration against police brutality, against systemic oppression, and racial inequities right here in our hometown,” he continued. "To come back here and be confronted with this suppression of our very rights to organize and to lead people to the polls to vote today, has actually only emboldened us. We’re not going to stop.”
According to The Washington Post, Kyesha Willis said she was pepper-sprayed along with her mother and three-year-old son at the march. Willis said she vomited as she tried to cover her son’s face and nose to protect him.
“I heard people screaming, ‘You can’t be in the road,’ but I wasn’t in the road,” Willis said. “We walked further and further away but it kept coming at us."