I will admit I have not been following much coverage about the Occupy protests. I know a lot has escalated over the past few weeks with the police and there are a few YouTube videos circulating showing police force and protesters.
I came across this article today posted on The Stranger and it make my stomach curl. A 19-year-old woman named Jennifer Fox was part of the protest in Seattle at the intersection of 5th Avenue and Pine Street on Tuesday, November 15th. She was three months pregnant, but felt this was an important protest for her to be a part of.
That was until, according to her, the police started walking towards the crowd while she screamed, “I’m pregnant! I’m pregnant. I’m trying to get out!”
Jennifer claims that the police then hit her — one officer hitting her in the stomach with their foot and another struck her in the stomach with a bicycle. After which they pepper sprayed her, ”Right before I turned, both cops lifted their pepper spray and sprayed me. My eyes puffed up and my eyes swelled shut,” says Jennifer.
She was taken to the ambulances on scene who drove her to a nearby hospital. After an ultrasound it was shown that the baby appeared to be fine. Jennifer says the trouble started Sunday when she started to experience cramps and a feeling she was going to pass out. Concerned friends called her another ambulance where she says she was told by a doctor that “there was no heartbeat” from the baby. “They diagnosed that I was having a miscarriage. They said the damage was from the kick and that the pepper spray got to it [the fetus], too.”
When Jennifer was asked about why she made the choice to be present at the protests — according to The Stranger, she said, “I was worried about it, but I didn’t know it would be this bad. I didn’t know that a cop would murder a baby that’s not born yet.”
:: At what point is police force too much force? Do you think this was an acceptable amount for a pregnant protester? ::
photo credit: jbhthescots via flickr