Mother arrested at a closed playground for protesting against social isolation restrictions
In Idaho, a mother was arrested on Tuesday, April 21st, for defying lockdown restrictions.
The woman was leading a mass protest on a closed playground near the local City Hall.
The activist was Sara Walton Brady, a 40-year-old mother of four from Meridian, as reported by Mail Online. She was in the out-of-service playground section of Kleiner Park with her children just before 4 pm, leading a group of people protesting against the new self-isolation order in the state.
The protest was organized by a group of moms who decided to gather together and state their opinion about the stay-at-home regime. They were supported by the Idaho Freedom Foundation(IFF) – a conservative organization, which according to their Facebook page, is ‘dedicated solely to providing policy solutions that promote liberty, prosperity, and quality of life for all Idahoans’.
The group of protesters vocally expressed their opposition to Idaho Governor Brad Little’s quarantine order.
Sara Brady and the other activists were repeatedly told the playground was closed to visitors. They were also kindly invited to use the other parts of Kleiner Park if they wanted to. The police officers were clearly doing their job by warning the people that the playground was off-limits due to the state’s orders, but the protesters demanded they have rights as they were paying their taxes.
Another woman captured Sara’s arrest with her cellphone. Madison Draper-Duncan summarized the key moments in a video and posted it on Facebook.
For those who didn’t want to watch the full video of the park Sara Brady incident I made a quick little edit of what happened for you guys. Moms who pay taxes.Can’t believe I have to say this: IM NOT ONE OF THE MOMS
Posted by Madison Draper-Duncan on Tuesday, April 21, 2020
One of the officers can be heard saying:
“Ma’am, I’ve told you to exit numerous times. This is it. Exit the playground now. I’m really trying to be nice about this.”
The mother-of-four refused to leave the area and continued arguing with the officer. She even challenged him to arrest her for being in the park.
After saying “Arrest me for being in the park. Do it!”, the woman positioned her hands behind her back, waiting for the policeman to place handcuffs on her. To be sure that the scene was captured on camera, Sara told the woman who was documenting the incident to ‘record it’.
Additionally, she clearly ordered the group to get the IFF on the phone and tell them about what was happening.
However, in a Q&A article, the communication director of the IFF, Dustin Hurst, denies that the organization took part in the rally.
Question: Did the IFF play a role in setting up the protest?
Not really. We knew about it, but we didn’t promote it on our website or social channels. There were no IFF staffers in attendance.
A press release from the police stated that Brady was booked into the local jail on a single count of misdemeanor trespassing.
They emphasized that the police officers gave the woman severe opportunities to act by the rules, but she was ‘non-compliant and forced officers to place her under arrest to resolve the issue’.
“These are very trying times and the Meridian Police Department supports the public’s right to assemble for peaceful protest, however the right does not include damaging public property or ignoring closures of City property and facilities.”
Sara Brady, who happens to be the wife of the Boise police detective Tim Brady, was released from the county jail a few hours later. It was just in time to attend a massive protest organized by the IFF non-profit organization outside the Meridian City Hall. Nearly a hundred people showed up at the demonstration, carrying homemade signs demanding their freedom.
Idaho News contacted the mother-of-four after she was released from jail. She told them:
“I feel like I was singled out because I was the only person that was arrested. I wasn’t the only person standing on the bark. I definitely wasn’t playing on the playground equipment. I wasn’t swinging, never touched them. But yeah, I do feel like I was singled out and maybe it was because I asked too many questions.”
The protests in Idaho are part of a growing nationwide trend in the U.S., where people intentionally violate the social distancing restrictions and stage demonstrations against stay-at-home orders due to the ongoing pandemic.
Michigan was one of the states where a mass protest was held, defying the lockdown measurements and holding the governor responsible for the bankrupt of small businesses that were not deemed ‘essential’.