Second Update: Amy was released, we think, but the producers with the funny foreign names haven’t. Call here. I will.
Laurie, the phone operator at the County Jail says she “hopes charges will be presented within the hour.” As of right now, Kouddous and Salazar are being held without charges.
Mayor Chris Coleman can be contacted at: 651-266-8510 or e-mailed at: https://mn-stpaul.civicplus.com/forms.asp?FID=69
Governor Tim Pawlenty can be reached at: (651) 296-3391 or e-mailed at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ramsey County Jail: 651-266-9350
Update:I called and was put on hold for ten minutes and then I demanded that they release Amy! She told me Amy had already been released. I was about to ask when but then she hung up on me…this was 8:45 est.
From the Democracy Now website:
ST. PAUL, MN—Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman was unlawfully arrested in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota at approximately 5 p.m. local time. Police violently manhandled Goodman, yanking her arm, as they arrested her. Video of her arrest can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oYjyvkR0bGQ
Goodman was arrested while attempting to free two Democracy Now! producers who were being unlawfuly detained. They are Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar. Kouddous and Salazar were arrested while they carried out their journalistic duties in covering street demonstrations at the Republican National Convention. Goodman’s crime appears to have been defending her colleagues and the freedom of the press.
Ramsey County Sherrif Bob Fletcher told Democracy Now! that Kouddous and Salazar were being arrested on suspicion of rioting. They are currently being held at the Ramsey County jail in St. Paul.
Democracy Now! is calling on all journalists and concerned citizens to call the office of Mayor Chris Coleman and the Ramsey County Jail and demand the immediate release of Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar. These calls can be directed to: Chris Rider from Mayor Coleman’s office at 651-266-8535 and the Ramsey County Jail at 651-266-9350 (press extension 0).
Democracy Now! stands by Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar and condemns this action by Twin Cities law enforcement as a clear violation of the freedom of the press and the First Amenmdent rights of these journalists.
During the demonstration in which they were arrested law enforcement officers used pepper spray, rubber bullets, concussion grenades and excessive force. Several dozen others were also arrested during this action.
Amy Goodman is one of the most well-known and well-respected journalists in the United States. She has received journalism’s top honors for her reporting and has a distinguished reputation of bravery and courage. The arrest of Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar is a transparent attempt to intimidate journalists from the nation’s leading independent news outlet.
Democracy Now! is a nationally-syndicated public TV and radio program that airs on over 700 radio and TV stations across the US and the globe.