1 arrest as abortion protesters fill SC Statehouse lobby

Associated Press (AP)
Supreme Court Abortion South Carolina

Protesters who support more abortion restrictions and protestors who upset at the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling removing protections for abortions demonstrate in the lobby of the South Carolina Statehouse on Tuesday, June 28, 2022, in Columbia South Carolina. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Collins)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A 32-year-old woman was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault as abortion protesters spent about 90 minutes inside the lobby of the South Carolina Statehouse during Tuesday’s special session on the state budget, authorities said.

The woman was seen on videos on social media yelling at police and putting her hands on an officer. She faces up to a $500 fine and 30 days in jail if convicted of third-degree assault and battery, according to police.

The woman was one of about 200 protestors who filled the second floor lobby of the Statehouse between the Senate and House chambers and a third floor balcony.

Most were part of a planned outdoor protest of people angry about the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision overturning the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade abortion rights case. They decided to come inside during the Legislature’s special session Tuesday to consider whether to override the governor’s budget vetoes.

Less than a dozen people who want to outlaw all abortions were inside the capitol and the two sides yelled at each other before the abortion rights protesters started to chant.

Statehouse security threatened the demonstrators with arrest for breaching the peace if they continued to chant loudly and the group left he Statehouse to protest outside.

The protesters did not interrupt the House and Senate, which finished the special session a few hours later.

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