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ACLU Sues DC Police Following Arrest Of Transgender Activist

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Jonah Bennett Contributor
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The American Civil Liberties Union has sued Washington, D.C., police for entering the home of a transgender activist and performing an arrest without a warrant.

D.C. police officers arrested activist Lourdes Ashley Hunter after they were called to the scene of an apartment party based on reports of noise about a week after the presidential election in November.

The scene soon devolved into a confrontation and officers arrested Hunter, The Washington Post reports.

Hunter, who is the executive director of the Trans Women of Color Collective, was subsequently held for several hours on charges of simple assault and resisting arrest.

“This is not the first time that MPD has gotten notice of these violations,” ACLU lawyer Shana Knizhnik said. “What’s clear is that the training wasn’t sufficient to prevent the violation that occurred in this case. They need to get it right.”

Hunter has complained that the arrest, performed after the police investigated the noise complaint, was excessive.

“There was no reason for the police to respond with such aggression and excess,” Hunter said, according to The Washington Post. “I hope that elevating this humiliating and painful incident helps us work toward a system in which police protect us and enforce the laws — not break them.”

When police arrived, one of the neighbors stated that Hunter had pushed him, which Hunter vehemently denied.

Officers moved to arrest Hunter, who moved back into the apartment. Officers followed and arrested Hunter there.

Hunter struggled with officers and screamed, “Let me go!”

The ACLU maintains that arrests can only be made with a warrant for misdemeanor charges.

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