Southern Poverty Law Center Lawyer Arrested, Charged With Domestic Terrorism Amid Atlanta ‘Cop City’ Attack
Emma Colton, Fox News, March 6, 2023
A lawyer for the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) was arrested and charged with domestic terrorism over the violence that broke out in Atlanta on Sunday in relation to protests of a planned training facility for police officers in the city, the SPLC has confirmed.
“An employee at the SPLC was arrested while acting — and identifying — as a legal observer on behalf of the National Lawyers Guild (NLG). The employee is an experienced legal observer, and their arrest is not evidence of any crime, but of heavy-handed law enforcement intervention against protesters,” the SPLC said in a statement on Monday.
Thomas Webb Jurgens was among the list of 23 suspected domestic terrorists released by the Atlanta Police Department on Monday. Violence broke out in Atlanta on Sunday after protesters of a planned police training facility hurled bricks and Molotov cocktails at officers and set cars on fire.
The Atlanta Police Department revealed all the suspects are from out of state or from another country except for two, including Jurgens.
“This is part of a months-long escalation of policing tactics against protesters and observers who oppose the destruction of the Weelaunee Forest to build a police training facility. The SPLC has and will continue to urge de-escalation of violence and police use of force against Black, Brown and Indigenous communities — working in partnership with these communities to dismantle white supremacy, strengthen intersectional movements and advance the human rights of all people,” the SPLC continued in its statement on Monday.
Dubbed “Cop City” by its detractors, the planned $90 million training complex for law enforcement officers has been the ire of environmentalists and anti-police activists since 2021 when the Atlanta City Council approved the complex in June of that year.