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US: Council President Is Cited For Battery After A Scuffle With Anti-lockdown Protestors

Situation quickly escalated from conversation to confrontation as some anti-lockdown protestors arrived at Fresno City Council President Miguel Arias' residence

Anti-lockdown

A scuffle between Fresno City Council President Miguel Arias and anti-lockdown protestors in the city led to a citation for battery on the council president along with the arrest of the anti-lockdown protestors whom some international media calling them as protestors while others calling them as a conservative activist group that runs a Youtube channel and Facebook media page called "Frontline America". 

On Tuesday evening, some of the people affected due to lockdown gathered at the city council president's house. The situation quickly escalated from a conversation to a confrontation in the heat of the moment when the protestors seemed to be advancing towards the council president's house while raising questions on the lockdown. In a video that has gone viral, Arias appeared to push one of the protesters on the stairs leading up to his apartment. As per media reports, he asked the protestors to leave saying "this isn't the place, it's my home" but they refused so he "escorted them downstairs".

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One of the protestors was quoted as saying by international media, "There are business owners who are losing everything and we just wanted to ask him a couple of questions," Bergquam said. "As I was saying that, he comes out of the apartment, grabs me by the arms, and tried to throw me down the stairs."

Arias was cited for three counts of battery by Fresno Police after a citizen's arrest as the video which is evidence and a part of the investigation shows him manhandling protestors. Arias in his defence has issued a statement on the incident.

"Yesterday afternoon, as my two kids slept, the safety of our home was violated by a dozen out-of-town individuals led by Sanger resident Ben Bergquam, a self-identified member of the Proud Boys, which the Southern Poverty Law Center classifies as a racist hate group. Bergquam and his companions bypassed security to reach my private condominium residence unannounced. The short video that has been released only depicts a small fraction of a much longer incident. Indeed, the entire initial sequence of events, including the group members’ attempts to force their way into my residence, is not depicted at all. I asked him to leave my home, emphasizing my kids were home and that I would not allow them to be placed in danger. I took precautions to ensure the safety of my family and protect them from individuals known to be armed and dangerous," he said in his statement.

"Since this incident, I have received numerous calls from outside the City and State, making additional threats against my family and I, requiring me to take additional precautions for our safety. At the same time, I have received overwhelming support from hundreds of City residents and community leaders from all political ideologies expressing support and concern for our family. In the coming days, I will explore all options to ensure that this does not occur again to my family nor anyone else’s family. I want to thank all those who have reached out and shown that our City will not allow a handful of outsiders to tear us apart," he added.

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The video is as below:

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