In the latest travesty of justice to hit Ohio, protester Benjamin Vrinston, of Beaver Creek CopBlock was booked into Greene County Jail tonight. His crime? Sitting in front of police cars that were threatening to drive through peaceful protesters at a John Crawford protest earlier this year. Counter Current News Reports:
Remember the shooting of John Crawford? Well a lot of police accountability and social justice activists in Beavercreek, Ohio do. More than any other city where there was a major, headline news story of a police shooting of an unarmed African American last year, the protests in Beavercreek have not stopped, or even slowed down one bit for almost an entire year now.
One of those protester was arrested, along with three others during a December 2014 “die-in” in the pet food aisle at the Walmart where John Crawford was shot and killed.
Well, that’s an open and shut case, right? He was arrested for trespassing, right? The police cuffed him laying down in the aisle, right?
Beavercreek Police Chief Evers told Counter Current News reporters that he had advised Walmart to allow the die in to take place. Walmart agreed and no arrests were made… yet.
But once the protesters had moved outside, a couple of police cruisers had begun advancing on the crowd that was singing and chanting on their way to their vehicles.
The Walmart location had already been closed. There were no shoppers there, only protesters at this time. When the police had told them to leave, the crowd began to cross at the pedestrian crosswalk. That’s when the police SUVs began driving into them – albeit slowly – using vehicles for crowd control, in spite of the fact that this is both against department policy and completely illegal.
Two brave individuals sat down and blocked the police SUV cruisers from doing this. Ironically enough, as soon as they were arrested, the actual police SUV they were placed in then backed into the fourth protester they arrested that day – apparently arresting her for asking why an African American protester was being singled out for arrest.
Today, Benjamin Virnston, 25, was booked into the Greene County Jail to begin serving his 90-day jail sentence for sitting down and preventing the illegal use of a vehicle for crowd control.
Sandra King, 56, the woman who was backed into, was fined $150 and ordered to serve 16 hours of community service, along with a sentence of 30 days in jail, with all but one day suspended.
There are still jury trials scheduled for the African American man who was singled out: Elias Anthony Kelley, 27; and Matthew Raska, 24, who joined Ben in blocking the police SUV cruisers.
What can you do?
Benjamin Virnston is in jail RIGHT NOW because he had the courage to SIT DOWN in front of a police SUV cruiser that was threatening to run into protesters – which DID run into a protester after they had arrested him and Matt Raska!
CALL the Greene County Jail NOW at (937) 562-4840 and speak with someone or leave them a message, standing up for Ben and the OBLIGATION of citizens to stand up to illegal police acts of violence against non-violent protesters. Tell them to FREE BENJAMIN NOW! Then help us SPREAD THE WORD!
(Article by M. David; image via Virgil Vaduva of the Greene County Herald)
Knowing Ben personally I encourage anyone reading to call the Greene County Jail and demand his release! Beaver Creek police have declared war on the constitution to cover up their crimes!