U.S. District Judge Richard Jones issued the two-week ban on using tear gas and pepper spray to help control rioters. The ruling said that these “indiscriminate” tactics could harm peaceful protesters or innocent bystanders and claimed the use of force is unconstitutional.
“Because they are indiscriminate, they may even spill into bystanders’ homes or offices as they have done before.”
He also pointed out that tear gas and pepper spray cause people to cough and could spread the CCP Virus.
The plaintiffs in the case were Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County and the Washington state chapter of ACLU.
The suit was filed after protestors suffered from burning eyes from pepper spray, difficulty breathing from tear gas, and bruises from foam-tipped projectiles lobbed at them by police.
“The right to protest is fundamental to democracy,” they said in a post on Twitter.
But many of the protests in Seattle turned into violent riots. While peaceful protests are supported by our first amendment rights, riots where businesses are being looted, rioters spray paint graffiti all over town, and arson is not supported by the first amendment. You do not have the right to break the law in the name of protests.
Last week a protestor rammed their vehicle into a crowd and there was a shooting of a protestor.
Police have also reported that they have had rocks and other dangerous objects thrown at them.
According to the article on Fox News:
Jones went on to add that police can use tear gas and pepper spray in very specific circumstances that include “violent or life-threatening activity” and only if the use of force is “targeted” at a particular agitator.
ACLU said the judge’s two-week ban is a “Victory” for BLM.
BREAKING: A federal court just blocked the Seattle Police Department from using chemical agents on protesters.@ACLU_WA shouldn’t have had to go to court over this, but they did — and won.
— ACLU (@ACLU) June 12, 2020
ACLU is suing Seattle over police “violence” against agitators and Antifa activists. The goal is keep the consent decree against @SPOG1952 members.
Meanwhile, ACLU pushed to keep body cameras OFF — if they were on 24/7 there’d be more evidence showing violence from crowds.
— (((Jason Rantz))) on KTTH Radio (@jasonrantz) June 9, 2020
It’s true, ACLU does support the cameras being off during protests. In an article by ACLU 100 Years, they explained why.
We supported that law (turning body cams off during protests) for very good reasons. There is a long history of law enforcement compiling dossiers on peaceful activists exercising their First Amendment rights in public marches and protests, and using cameras to send an intimidating message to such protesters: “we are WATCHING YOU and will REMEMBER your presence at this event.”
It’s unfortunate that non-peaceful protestors are being protected but our police are not.