NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Twenty-one people were detained after troopers with the Tennessee Highway Patrol cleared the Capitol grounds of protesters late Monday night.
According to the THP, troopers issued a warning to the demonstrators that anyone remaining on Capitol property after 11 p.m. would be arrested.
The protesters refused to leave and instead, sat down and locked their arms and legs together in an effort to remain on the grounds, according to the THP.
Troopers took 21 people into custody, 19 of which were cited and released. Two people on the grounds were arrested for public intoxication.
Lieutenant Bill Miller with the THP said multiple warnings were issued before the 11 p.m. deadline.
“It is 2020, wake up America, wake up Nashville, we’re one of the only cities that’s not on fire. We’re
one of the only protests where we come out and feed the homeless, we’re one of the only protests where we go by and clean up the plaza and make sure it’s safe and clean for everybody to enjoy and use and this is how they treat us, it’s time to wake up,” protester Dymin Cannon told News 2.
Demonstrators have been at the Capitol since Friday and intended on staying overnight.
Organizers are demanding to speak with Governor Bill Lee and for the removal of the bust of Confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest.
Gov. Lee warned protesters not to camp on Capitol grounds, saying it is a violation of state law, which he intends to enforce.
“We’ll be back here tomorrow and the next day and the day after that until he decides
to meet with us and have a conversation. We’re asking to bring the country together we want
to have a conversation an open dialogue. Not with cameras around, to have an open dialogue to see
what we can change what we can do better and how it works for everybody,” added Cannon.