USA Today has an account of Des Moines Register reporter Andrea Sahouri’s testimony at her trial stemming from her arrest at a Black Lives Matter protest last summer. (The Register and USA Today are both Gannett papers.)
“It’s important for journalists to be on the scene and document what’s happening,” Sahouri said as part of her testimony. “Protests erupted not just across the country but all over the world. I felt like I was playing a role in that. I know we are a small city, but I felt like I was playing a role in that.”
Here, I think, is the key:
The judge has also not ruled on a motion filed by Sahouri’s attorney during the trial for a directed verdict to decide the case in Sahouri and Robnett’s favor. [Sahouri and her then-boyfriend, Spenser Robnett, were both pepper-sprayed and arrested.]
This case should be thrown out as quickly as possible — not just to ensure that justice is done and the First Amendment is protected, but to send a message to the police and the prosecutors who are pursuing this dubious case.