Local News

Protesters camp out for fifth day in a row outside governor's mansion

Posted July 2, 2020 6:55 p.m. EDT
Updated July 3, 2020 12:08 p.m. EDT

— Protesters are gathering for a fifth day in a row downtown Raleigh outside the governor's mansion. These demonstrations are to demand that Gov. Roy Cooper veto a bill that would make death investigation records private.

The scene is calm downtown Friday morning. Before the sun came up, people were lying on the ground and playing music in protest, while police blocked the road outside the governor's mansion.

Midday, the protesters were gathered outside on the sidewalk and were not blocking traffic.

On Thursday, Raleigh police have arrested at least 20 protesters who were blocking traffic on Capital Boulevard downtown.

WRAL's Joe Fisher reports police gave repeated warnings for the protesters to clear the road before the arrests were made. People gathered, stood and sat across the road and also surrounded vehicles that were blocked off. They also prevented Raleigh police who were attempting to move the vehicles who were blocked in by the protesters.

The protesters have been camped out at the Executive Mansion since early Monday in effort to put pressure on Governor Cooper to veto a bill they say could keep secret details of deaths in police custody or jails. Senate Bill 168 was passed early last Friday as lawmakers rushed to adjourn their legislative session, mandates death investigation records remain confidential when they reach the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner instead of being publicly available.

The protesters insist that the bill goes against the changes in policing that they have been fighting for since George Floyd's death in police custody in Minneapolis last month launched protests across the country.

Cooper has not indicated whether he will sign the bill into law.

The protesters had a message that started peacefully on Thursday but quickly escalated when protesters began blocking roads and intersections, surrounding police cars and blocking people driving through downtown. At times, the protesters were even jumping on people’s vehicles.

Protesters eventually made their way to Capital Boulevard, where they made a human chain that blocked traffic. After police asked them to move, people started getting arrested. One witness said he stands with their message but not how they’re carrying it out.

“By that point I had to leave out of fear for my own safety," said Bryant Riddick. "Because I was in fear from the people rather than the police officers.

"The majority of them are white who are supposedly fighting for a black cause, but when a black man speaks up for having a different perspective on things they want to shut my voice out and that’s one of the problems in America today.”

Thursday night, Raleigh police released mug shots of the 20 arrested. Most were charged with resisting a public officer. They include:

Protesters arrested for blocking traffic on Capital Boulevard

  • Natya Regensburger: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Nina Brochin: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Omar Bayoumi: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Raul Figueroa-Benetti: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Sarah Wolff: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Sean McKinney: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Travis Harrington: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Zoe Schwandt: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Zoya Regensburger: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment (two counts)
  • Angelena Parker: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic

Protesters arrested for blocking traffic on Capital Boulevard

  • Autumn Ficker: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Bradley Demery: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Caleb Buchbinder: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Elizabeth Williams: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Gabriel Cremmins: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Ian Imperial: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Kacey Barker: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Kristin Emery: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
  • Mehrdad Mojarrad: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic and false imprisonment
  • Michael Miracco: Resist, delay, obstruct; impeding the flow of traffic
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