NewsSoutheast Valley NewsTempe News


Protesters defy ASU President Crow as he threatens suspension for protesting, citing health guidelines

BLM Protest in Tempe, Sunday 8-30-20
Posted at 10:22 PM, Aug 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-31 01:22:02-04

Arizona State students defy the school's president with a march through the campus.

The ASU Black African Coalition led by students said they had a march planned for Sunday, August 30, for weeks; teaming up with Black Lives Matter Metro Phoenix.

On Tuesday, as part of the university's response to stop the spread of COVID-19, President Michael Crow released a statement with new health guidelines including threatening suspension for students who take part in social gatherings that violate public health guidelines.

The march started at Daley Park near College Avenue and Broadway Road in Tempe. Protesters walked down College Ave, and through the Arizona State University Campus.

On June 1, President Crow released a statement asking students and faculty at Arizona State to take initiative in finding new ways to improve social transformation.

Things have been unsettled for Valley protesters in the past two weeks, with resistance from counterprotests turning violent, and canceling a Black Lives Matter protest altogether.

On August 20, members of Black Lives Matter and pro-police group Back the Blue escalated to violence when a member of Back the Blue clashed at a rally in Gilbert. Three arrests were made, but police and protestors believe that more assaults took place since police were not on site when the violence started.

On August 26, Black Lives Matter Metro Phoenix was forced to cancel a planned march after receiving threats of violence toward protestors.

On Friday, 12 protestors were arrested by Phoenix Police after a rally and march hosted by The W.E. Rising Project. Two of those protesters were arrested for crimes committed at prior protests.

"We agreed to leave, then [Phoenix Police] go and make the arrests. It was not them coming out and coming into the street while they're doing it saying, 'All right you're under arrest for unlawful assembly.' They wait," said Hava Derby, who was arrested on Friday night for an incident during a protest on August 9th. "There doesn't seem to be any concern for what we're out in the streets for, it just feels like one big entity of shutting it down."

Derby said she was arrested for a traffic violation but was booked for obstructing a thoroughfare dated on August 9.

Phoenix Police said, "In many cases, officers are unable to arrest individuals at the scene of a crime for various reasons."

"If a suspect flees or it is unsafe for the officers to make the arrest, they can and frequently arrest individuals at a later date. Such is the case with some of the individuals arrested in connection with criminal activity during the recent protests. said a spokesperson with a Phoenix Police Department.

Phoenix Police also denied the existence of a list of protesters in the department.