Police accused eight Charlotte abortion protesters on Saturday of violating the COVID-19 ban on mass gatherings in North Carolina.
According to the police, around 50 demonstrators gathered outside the A Preferred Women’s Health Center on Latrobe Drive. The center has been the scene of numerous abortion protests over the years.
The crowd violated mass assembly regulations ordering the state to stay at home, the police said, and officials asked everyone to leave.
“After an initial request to comply with the law, 12 people who violated the law refused to go,” according to a press release by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, under state law for violating emergency bans and restrictions.
After the police released the quotes, eight of the protesters still refused to go and were arrested.
The police said they would publish the names of the eight demonstrators as soon as the names of the CMPD Department of Public Affairs became available.
The video, posted on the Facebook page of Love Life, a Charlotte-based anti-abortion group, shows Charlotte-Mecklenburg police cars outside the clinic on Saturday.
On Thursday four people joined the love life Lawsuit submitted to the Federal Court against the Mayor and Deputy Chief of Police of Greensboro after being arrested on March 28 for violating Guilford city and county orders while protesting at an abortion clinic.
The four plaintiffs allege that their arrests violated their first-time adjustment rights to gather and protest at the clinic, which is one of four places for women to choose. The others are in Charlotte, Raleigh and Jacksonville, Florida.
Love Life members also argue that their activities under an exception to the regulation that allows “outdoor activities” are considered essential.
CMPD officials would disagree.
“The CMPD will continue to manage the order through voluntary compliance,” the press release says, “but the department will enforce violations of quotes and / or misdemeanor arrests unless voluntary cooperation is achieved.”
Police said the public could report violations of the home stay order by calling 311 via the CLT + mobile app and online at www.cmpd.org.