Washington, DC – Video has now been released showing Rev. Patrick Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition during his unjust arrest for praying on a public sidewalk in front of a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Washington, D.C. on June 8, 2010.
Rev. Mahoney was arrested for “unlawful entry” as he knelt in prayer and Bible reading on a sidewalk inside a recently constructed fence that city records continue to show is public property. However, the General Counsel of the Metropolitan Police Department advised the officers on the scene that “at this time” their determination was that the property inside the fence line is private. Rev. Mahoney spent the night in jail before being released.
In 1999, Operation Rescue was involved in litigation with the Justice Department when it was discovered that the property in front of the Planned Parenthood building, including the sidewalk leading up to the door, was public. Since then, for over a decade, pro-lifers have peacefully offered help to abortion bound women on the public sidewalk leading to the door of the abortion clinic.
“It is outrageous that Planned Parenthood thinks they can fence public property, put up a sign, then demand arrests of peaceful Christians for doing what they have lawfully done for over a decade,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “We will help fight this injustice that is impeding our free speech and thereby costing the innocent lives of pre-born babies.”
Rev. Mahoney has vowed to fight the case in criminal court and plans to sue the city to reassert the First Amendment rights of citizens to peacefully conduct free speech activities on the public sidewalk.
Read press release from Rev. Mahoney.
Thanks to ProLifeUnity.com for producing this video.