“This was a very new experience. I’ve been in several conflict zones: I was in the civil war regions in Georgia, the Gaza strip, illegally visited the Kaliningrad region when travel to the Soviet Union was still strictly prohibited for westerners, I’ve been in Iraq, Vietnam and in China, I’ve met Cuba dissidents. But to be arrested and yelled at and be rudely treated by police? For that I had to travel to Ferguson and St. Louis in the United States of America.”
Journalists Ansgar Graw, Frank Hermann, Lukas Hermsmeier, and Ryan Devereaux, have filed a lawsuit that alleges battery by the police, false arrest and unreasonable search and seizure. The journalists were covering the protests in Ferguson, Missouri following the killing of Michael Brown.
“This unlawful conduct was undertaken with the intention of obstructing, chilling, deterring, and retaliating against Plaintiffs for engaging in constitutionally-protected speech, newsgathering, and recording of police activities,” the complaint reads.
Two of the journalists, Devereauz and Hermsmeier, allege that they were shot with rubber bullets after they had raised their hands in the air and identified themselves as members of the press. Devereaux was hit once in the back and Hermsmeier was hit twice by the officers’ shots. They were arrested and charged with refusal to disperse. They were left hand-cuffed in plastic ties for hours. Allegations in the lawsuit include that the journalists still suffer physical injury…
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