CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. – A corrections officer slowly drove his truck through a group of protesters that had formed a line outside of an ICE detention center on Wednesday night. 

But with the way the media reported it, you would’ve thought that he plowed through the crowd in a horrific act of violence.

ice_detention_center_truck_protesters

Protesters gathered outside an ICE detention center in Rhode Island on Wednesday. (Twitter)

 

Here’s one of the headlines from Newsweek:

“CORRECTIONAL OFFICER DROVE PICKUP TRUCK INTO GROUP OF PEACEFUL PROTESTERS: HE ‘RAN US OVER'”

Obviously that’s an attention-grabber. Who would so recklessly charge their pickup through a group of peaceful protesters?

Here’s another from ABC News:

“OFFICERS PEPPER-SPRAY PROTESTERS AS TRUCK DRIVES THROUGH CROWD OUTSIDE ICE FACILITY”

Newsweek reported that on Wednesday, hundreds of Jewish protesters, mostly members of Never Again Action, a group that advocates for the rights of migrants detained by ICE, gathered outside the Donald W. Wyatt Detention facility in Central Falls, Rhode Island.

truck_ice_facility_protesters

The truck drives up to the line of protesters and stops, sounding his horn. (Twitter)

 

A video was posted on Twitter that showed the large gathering of protesters. On the right side of the frame, a pickup truck pulls up and hits the brakes, sounding his horn to get the people out of the way from blocking the parking lot.

The protesters, which were sitting on the ground, immediately jumped up and began surrounding the vehicle, yelling loudly. Some can be seen even striking the truck.

The driver then takes their foot off of the brake and begins moving forward. It’s clear that he did even fully remove his foot from the brake as he crept forward – let alone hit the gas – as the video shows his brake lights on the entire time. 

truck_protesters_twitter_ICE

Protesters jump onto the officer’s truck, hitting it while yelling at him. (Twitter)

 

Screams break out and protesters climb onto the truck as he once again comes to a stop. The protesters yell and hit the truck repeatedly. 

“F— you, you f—-ng piece of s–t,” can be heard audibly from one of the ‘peaceful protesters’.

 

Did you know that Law Enforcement Today has a private new home for those who support emergency responders and veterans?  It’s called LET Unity, and it’s where we share the untold stories of those patriotic Americans.  Every penny gets reinvested into giving these heroes a voice.  Check it out today.

 

The tweet that went viral following the incident claimed that the owner of the pickup truck worked for ICE, but reports later confirmed that he was actually a corrections officer. 

“We have confirmed that the person driving the truck is a correctional officer who works for the detention facility,” one of the protesters said. “The driver was in his uniform when he hit the protestors. His rank and name were embroidered on his shirt and he was wearing a badge at the time.”

Members of the crowd reported that a few of the protesters suffered minor injuries from the incident. 

Because the protesters would not abandon their post, blocking the entrances in and out of the facility, one of the officers used OC spray to break up the crowd. 

“Many protesters were trying to give the police statements and they refused to take our statements,” one of the protesters said. 

Makes you wonder that if a number of cops were there and didn’t take any action, was the act blown out of proportion after the fact?

 

Should this have escalated to the point it did? No. Was the corrections officer right in the way he handled the protesters? Again, no. We are, by no means, condoning this officer’s actions.

BUT — the media owes a certain level of responsibility to the public when reporting the news… and these attention-grabbing headlines only aim to vilify law enforcement further the divide between police and the public. 

After all, how many people would share that story without reading anything more than the headline?

 

Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today?  With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.  
 
Make sure you click “following” and then click “see first” so you don’t miss a thing!  (See image below.)  Thanks for being a part of the LET family!
 
Facebook Follow First