A pro-life leader related how police arrested him and a student leader in front of a Washington, DC, Planned Parenthood for chalking the sidewalk during an interview with Breitbart News Editor-in-Chief Alex Marlow on Sirius XM’s Breitbart News Daily.
Students for Life of America (SFLA) Partnerships Adviser Warner DePriest said he and Erica Caporaletti, president of one of the SFLA groups, were arrested, taken to the police station, and placed in jail, where they waited until receiving a citation that read, “defacing public property.”
DePriest said he protests by praying and chalking pro-life messages in front of Planned Parenthood regularly every weekend because of his commitment to his Christian faith and to life.
SFLA President Kristan Hawkins said she “couldn’t be prouder” of DePriest and Caporaletti for their efforts to stand up for life.
“But, also … we’re afraid for our rights,” she continued. “and what’s happening here in America. What’s very clear … is that we’ve got viewpoint discrimination happening within the city, where the mayor has painted with government speech ‘Black Lives Matter,’ then allowed a group of protesters, without a permit and with permanent paint, to paint ‘Defund the Police.’”
Hawkins explained her organization wrote to D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, stating she had “opened up the D.C. streets for public expression,” and that SFLA would like to add their voice to the conversation.
SFLA obtained a permit to assemble, but never received a response from Bowser to its letter, the pro-life leader said. The city’s special events representative, however, contacted the group and asked SFLA to use tempera paint that would wash off quickly, a condition with which the group complied.
“But, when we showed up on Saturday morning, we had the mayor’s answer because there were six police squad cars waiting for us,” Hawkins said.Matt Perdie
Marlow said the obvious discrimination happening in the country is “discouraging.”
“It is discouraging to see there is such a clear discrimination going on,” Hawkins agreed. “We asked the police officers, ‘Why are you doing this? You know this is wrong.’”
She said the police officers said, “We’re reporting to the mayor.”
Hawkins said Bowser has “a close relationship with Planned Parenthood” and was “one of their guests of honor when they opened.”
“What I find heartening, though, in spite of this discrimination that we’re seeing, there’s people like Warner, there’s people like Erica, who are willing to stand up and say, ‘No, this is wrong,’” she added.
Hawkins said she has received numerous phone calls from attorneys who have offered pro-bono criminal defense services to SFLA and help with a First Amendment lawsuit.
“We need to have this conversation in our country,” she said.
“Quite frankly, there is no better place to talk about if black lives matter, than … in front of a Planned Parenthood,” Hawkins said, adding that as DePriest and Caporaletti were being arrested, Planned Parenthood facilities across the country were “ending the lives of 360 black children.”
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