Ousting Undercovers, Connections with Neighbors & Props from Elected Reps: Liberty Empowerment Project is Having an Impact in Richmond
This post was authored by Nate Cox and originally posted to VirginiaCopBlock.org.
Liberty Empowerment Project Update #2 – Day 3!
Day #3 of the Liberty Empowerment Project is now complete! We handed out another 700+ Liberty Empowerment Packets today which totals us at about 2000 or slightly more within the first THREE days!
Today was pretty eventful in our outreach and I’ll briefly explain why.
We start out every morning doing outreach in front of various court houses from about 8:30-9:30am. This morning we were located at Manchester General District Court located a few blocks from the intersection of Maury and Commerce St. A week from yesterday, Tuesday July 31 we were at this court house and were eventually told that we couldn’t be on the court house property handing out that information (still unclear of what we’d get charged with, likely soliciting, but I’ll push them on the issue next time and figure out what law they are claiming I’m breaking) so we stayed on the sidewalk. Today we didn’t have any issues at the courthouse, although we did notice one of the deputies came outside to see where we were located. Right about 9am we spotted Joe Morrissey and he told us that he’d take our packet as soon as he got out of court roughly 15 minutes later. Which we did! Meg McLain, briefly spoke with him and gave him a Liberty Empowerment Packet and included her business card. Later in the day she received an email from him about the material that was given to him.
After we left the court house we finished up handing out packets in Mosby Court and that surrounding area, as well as Oliver Hill Apartments. From there we went into Fairfield Court where we got a great response from people in that community! As I was turning around on the first street street we went down to head back to get more supplies I noticed a guy in a car. As I walked by the car I noticed a shortwave radio in his lap. His windows were rolled up and immediately asked him if he was the Police. He wouldn’t roll the windows down and did not give me a clear answer, so I took a couple pictures of the car as I walked around to the driver-side door. To my new friends in Fairfield Court, if you see this car/ this license plate know that this alleged police officer failed to ID himself and threatened to arrest me for simply asking him to identify himself. Continue to photograph and film the police at every possible chance you get. It’s for your own protection as well as the protection of anyone victimized by the police. It’s the only way to hold our public servants accountable.
After walking away from this car, we noticed a high level of police presence in the neighborhood for the next couple of hours. As I was dropping off some literature to some folks sitting on their front porch Officer Deane Waite who had already circled the block and noticed me and my colleagues helping with outreach pulled over to the curb as I was walking away from the house. This video is video of my first encounter with Officer Deane Waite.
Officer Waite later pulled my vehicle over as I was driving a few streets over from where it was originally parked (as we were making progress in the neighborhood). He thought I may or may not have ran a stop sign because after I made a right onto the street I was proceeding on, a vehicle came up quick on my rear and honked the horn (which he witnessed). Which is ironic, because I had just seen nearly the same thing happen at the intersection while I was walking back to my car, because the street that I was making a right on didn’t have to yield or stop at that intersection, although just behind me on the street I was turning on was a semi-sharp turn that people going fast would likely come up fast on someone just making a turn from that stop sign that I did. Anyways, He pulled me over and hit the blue lights just as I was popping my trunk and getting out of my car. I got out my car and closed the trunk and the rest of the conversation you can find in the video below.
We continued to have great conversations with folks until we left the community a couple hours later.