Sunday, June 18, 2006
KLAN SURROUNDED IN TEXAS
Several people were arrested while protesting a KKK anti-illegal immigration rally Saturday afternoon at the Midland County Courthouse in Texas.
Protected by nearly 100 officers from city, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies, the 23 Klan members were badly outnumbered at the Midland County Courthouse by an estimated 500 counterprotesters. The crowd of predominately white and Hispanic protesters lined the streets, yelling at Klansmen in the loud and emotionally-charged protest.
Many of the anti-klan protesters - and several of those arrested - were members of Anti-Racist Action groups from across the state. The anti-racists who included many teens circled the courthouse, beating on drums and chanting, ''No Nazis, no KKK, no fascists, U.S.A.''
Protesters cheered loudly when the Klan picked up their belongings and left the courthouse lawn. They were then ushered out of town with a police escort.
The following is from The Houston Chronicle.
Seven arrested as demonstrators protest Klan rally
MIDLAND — Seven people were arrested today at a Ku Klux Klan rally against illegal immigration, officials said.
Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter said the seven were believed to be counter-protesters at the two-hour rally in front of the county courthouse.
No serious injuries were reported, according to The Midland Reporter-Telegram.
Charges against the people arrested ranged from assault to disorderly conduct, and one Midland resident, David Alexander Baimbridge, was charged with felony aggravated assault of a public servant, officials said.
About 500 people lined the streets to protest the 25 Klan-affiliated rally attendees, police said.
Many counter-protesters were with the Anti-Racist Action group and had traveled from San Antonio and Houston, officials said.
About 150 law enforcement officers from several agencies stood by as the groups demonstrated and screamed at each other.
The League of United Latin American Citizens held a peaceful protest nearby at Centennial Park.
Counter-protesters at the courthouse said they were offended that the San-Angelo based Klan traveled to Midland for a rally.
"I was born here in Midland, Texas and I didn't invite them here," said Rudy Bonilla, who attended the demonstration with members of True-Lite Christian Fellowship church members.
They also complained about the cost to Midland for extra security, which officials estimated at $31,000.