September 21, 2019
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Officer resigns after 2 hurt by truck at Rhode Island immigration protest

WLNE-TV | AP
WLNE-TV | AP
In this still image from video provided by WLNE-TV, protesters blocking an entrance to the Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility begin to move as a pickup truck approaches, Wednesday night, Aug. 14, 2019, in Central Falls, R.I. The group, which was protesting federal immigration policies, said at least two people were injured. Rhode Island's attorney general said he is investigating the incident.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — An officer at a detention center resigned Friday amid investigations into a truck that drove through a group protesting federal immigration policies.

The resignation of Capt. Thomas Woodworth from the Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility was announced in a brief statement from the center in Central Falls, Rhode Island, a day after it said Woodworth had been placed on administrative leave.

“The incident which occurred on August 14 remains under active investigation by the Rhode Island State Police and under internal investigation by the Wyatt,” said Francis McMahon, a spokesman for the facility which is used by U.S. Customs and Enforcement.

[A truck drove into ICE protesters outside a Rhode Island prison. They say a guard was at the wheel.]

Officials at the center have not explicitly said whether Woodworth was driving the truck, saying that was part of the overall investigation.

A phone number to seek comment from Woodworth couldn’t be found, and it wasn’t clear whether he had a lawyer to speak for him.

The Jewish youth movement Never Again Action said at least two people were injured, one seriously, Wednesday night after a pickup that protesters said was operated by a uniformed corrections officer drove up to an entrance blocked by demonstrators.

Video posted by the group showed the vehicle stopping before again moving forward.

Protesters surrounded the truck, screaming and chanting: “The whole world is watching! The whole world is watching!”

Never Again Action said Jerry Belair, 64, of Warren, suffered a broken leg and internal bleeding and was being evaluated at a hospital for a possible back injury. It didn’t identify the other person it said was injured by the truck but said three other demonstrators were treated after inhaling pepper spray they say prison personnel used to disperse the crowd.

Rhode Island Attorney General Peter Neronha, a Democrat, announced Thursday that his office and state police were investigating .

 



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