Anti-Trump protesters in New Haven, Connecticut blocked a roadway and reportedly delayed an ambulance with a critically-ill patient from reaching the hospital in a timely manner.
The protest took place Saturday at New Haven’s City Hall but eventually the protesters wandered onto the streets and blocked traffic. Video shows protesters wandering down the street amid cars and chanting “Whose streets? Our streets!” The person who was leading the march at one point tells protesters to block traffic saying, “No one gets by, unless it’s an ambulance.” But according to police the blocked streets did result in an ambulance being prevented from reaching the hospital. Fox 61 reports what happened:
State police said the protesters were in the process of being cleared from the highway, but not before they blocked an ambulance carrying a critically ill patient. Due to this delay, EMTs had to perform an emergency medical procedure in the ambulance, instead of at the hospital…
An attorney representing the protesters said police are responsible for problems at the demonstration, including the delay of the ambulance stuck in traffic.
Attorney Patricia Kane said protesters had asked police to inform them if emergency vehicles needed to get through — and that officers didn’t do so. Kane said she has been told the patient was a woman in labor.
The identity and condition of the person in the ambulance has not been identified, so it’s possible we may not have the full story here. That said, the theory being advanced by this attorney, i.e. protesters have a right to inconvenience everyone on a public street and if an ambulance doesn’t get through it’s the cops fault, does not seem like a defensible one. Unless protesters had a permit for a parade, they had no right to block the street in the first place.
Norman Clement, who was leading the protest with a bullhorn, was identified by police and reportedly tried to run. He knocked over protesters in his path and was pepper spray and arrested. He has been charged with inciting a riot and other charges. Here’s video of the protesters in the streets:
Finally, this local news report features complaints by the protesters about police behavior: