Man Who Waved Gun and Yelled ‘Womp Womp’ Arrested at Immigration Rally
An Alabama man who yelled &ldquowomp womp&rdquo and waved a gun at men and women protesting the separation of migrant households appeared in court on Monday on charges of reckless endangerment and menacing, officials stated.
The man, Shane Ryan Sealy, 34, pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanors in Huntsville Municipal Court, and a trial date was set for Aug. 21, stated Christy Wampler, a court supervisor. Mr. Sealy was released on bond.
At about noon on Saturday, Mr. Sealy began heckling a gathering of approximately 150 to 200 people at a public park in Huntsville, a city of about 190,000 individuals in northern Alabama.
The event was a single of dozens of &ldquofamilies belong with each other&rdquo events held in cities across the nation to protest President Trump&rsquos &ldquozero tolerance&rdquo immigration policy, which included separating families and children who arrived together at the U.S.-Mexico border. The president signed an executive order on June 20 to finish the practice, but more than two,000 children remain separated from their parents.
Shortly right after the rally in Huntsville&rsquos Big Spring Park got began, Mr. Sealy, identified as a former high college teacher by the neighborhood station WAFF-Television, began marching back and forth in between the crowd and a gazebo where organizers and speakers have been seated.
He was holding a placard that said &ldquoIce, ice infant,&rdquo a reference to the acronym for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, even though singing an unrelated song by that name by the artist Vanilla Ice.
According to videos recorded by individuals attending the rally, Mr. Sealy also yelled &ldquowomp womp&rdquo a number of occasions, repeating the sad trombone sound that was thrust into national discourse for the duration of the debate over the Trump administration&rsquos immigration policy.
Even though appearing on Fox News on June 19, Corey Lewandowski, Mr. Trump&rsquos former campaign manager, said &ldquowomp womp&rdquo when he heard a story about a ten-year-old girl with Down syndrome who was taken away from her mother in South Texas.
1 video recorded by a particular person at the rally shows Mr. Sealy circling the gazebo, repeatedly shouting &ldquowomp womp&rdquo as Kerry Holder-Joffrion, an Episcopalian priest, begins to speak. &ldquoThe uniting force of really like is higher than the force of hatred,&rdquo she said, raising her voice to be heard above his.
Lt. Michael Johnson of the Huntsville Police Division mentioned in an emailed statement following the arrest that Mr. Sealy started a fight with a protester and then pushed the protester, who knocked Mr. Sealy to the ground.
Mr. Sealy got up, pulled out a concealed Glock handgun and &ldquowaved it around visible to the crowd of protesters,&rdquo the officer said. Mr. Sealy then re-concealed the weapon and was walking away when he was arrested by the police who have been monitoring the occasion, Lieutenant Johnson said.
&ldquoWe know he was agitating the permitted protesters, but he would not make a statement as to why he was there,&rdquo he added.
A second video, published by WAFF-Television from a witness, shows Mr. Sealy walking away from the rally as its attendees shout, &ldquoGun, he has a gun.&rdquo The police then approach Mr. Sealy and arrest him.
Heather Resendez, a neighborhood organizer of the rally who had been seated inside the gazebo, mentioned Monday that she saw Mr. Sealy confront a man who had been trying to &ldquocorral&rdquo him.
Mr. Sealy &ldquoshoved first,&rdquo the man shoved back and Mr. Sealy pulled out the gun from his waistband, Ms. Resendez said in an interview. He pointed the gun at the man in front of him, she mentioned, and &ldquowaved it in our direction.&rdquo Ms. Resendez pulled a girl to the ground and a handful of other folks did the exact same, she said.
&ldquoI was screaming to the protesters, &lsquoGet down, he has a gun,&rsquo&rdquo she stated. &ldquoI heard him generating threats: &lsquoI could shoot all of you&rsquo or &lsquoI could kill all of you.&rsquo&rdquo
Even though the &ldquofamilies belong with each other&rdquo events were widespread, there had been handful of disturbances. Mr. Sealy&rsquos was one of a handful of arrests reported that day, which includes a single person in Columbus, Ohio, on a charge of obstructing official organization, and five individuals protesting outdoors an Immigration and Customs Enforcement constructing in Dallas.
Mr. Sealy could not immediately be reached for comment on Monday. The court official stated it was not clear if he had a lawyer.
Published at Mon, 02 Jul 2018 21:38:16 +0000