The American Civil Liberties Union of the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit Thursday against the Trump administration and federal law enforcement agencies, saying they violated the constitutional rights of demonstrators who were violently evacuated out of a park Monday to clear the path for a photo op by President Trump.
Court documents accuse officers of conducting a coordinated and "unprovoked charge into a crowd of demonstrators" who had gathered across from the White House in Lafayette Park to protest the killing of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor at the hands of police, as well as broader systemic injustices perpetrated by law enforcement against black people in the United States.
The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on behalf of Black Lives Matter D.C., and individual protesters who were in Lafayette Park on Monday evening.
"Across the country, law enforcement armed with military weaponry are responding with violence to people who are protesting police brutality," said Ben Wizner, director of the ACLU's Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project.
This is the first of many lawsuits the ACLU intends to file across the country in response to police brutality against protesters," Wizner added.