PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — George Floyd protesters arrested over the weekend in downtown Pittsburgh will spend the next few days preparing to defend themselves in front of a judge.
One tells KDKA that he hopes cell phone video helps his case.
KDKA’s Meghan Schiller talked with one protester who found himself on the ground and in handcuffs along Liberty Avenue.
“I was trying to document what was going on,” said John Connors, a McKees Rocks native.
Connors captured cell phone video as he protested in downtown on Saturday. At one point in the video, police ordered everyone to leave the intersection.
Connors said things “became confusing.” In the video, you can hear Connors asking police officers from different forces which way he needs to go to “get out of here.”
“A couple of SWAT officers come up and they were real cordial and they told us you can’t go to the right and just go straight down,” Connors said.
Connors walked in that direction toward the 7-Eleven convenience store and said this to a line of police officers in tactical gear:
“Are you guys police officers or are you guys cops?”
The video shows what happened next.
“And there was a gentleman holding a shotgun [who] took out an OC container, pulled it, threw it directly at me, it hit me, rolled away and then that same officer shot me,” Connor said.
Connors was arrested moments later.
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He tells KDKA that he’d describe what he said to the officers as antagonizing but hopes his video shows he did not resort to violence.
He’s facing charges for failure to disperse and disorderly conduct.
“Record everything, make sure you have somebody there to back you up to record everybody, and stay safe and watch out for the bad apples,” said Connors.
Connors will plead his case on June 12.
He said he’s thankful for the opportunity to exercise his First Amendment right and protest and supports police officers as a whole.