Clobbered by Trump’s Goons, Activists Say

     BRONX, N.Y. (CN) – Security guards for Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump assaulted a group of Latinos donning Klan robes to spoof his supporters on a public sidewalk, five of the activists claim in court.
     Efrain Galicia, of Queens, and four other activists named in the complaint say that they have been protesting Trump ever since he kicked off his presidential campaign with “inflammatory and unsubstantiated claims” about Mexican immigrants.
     “They’re bringing drugs,” Trump bellowed at his June 16 press conference. “They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”
     Galicia says that he and his fellow protesters have been shadowing the Republican billionaire’s stump speeches every month since at the Trump Tower.
     The July and August protests went off without a hitch after New York City police reminded Trump’s security detail that the activists had the right to protest Trump on a public sidewalk, according to the 17-page complaint.
     Shortly before the demonstration on Sept. 3, Galicia said he learned that ex-Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke – like many white nationalist leaders – endorsed Trump’s nativist platform on immigration.
     Galicia says that the group incorporated the news in their protest by donning white robes with a mock-up of Trump’s slogan, “MAKE AMERICA RACIST AGAIN!”
     “The Sept. 3, 2015 demonstration attended by plaintiffs was a peaceful and lawful assembly on a public sidewalk to protest the policies and racially incendiary statements of a man seeking the nomination of the Republican Party to be its candidate for the office of President of the United States,” the complaint says.
     A news crew for the local television station New York 1 captured the squabble that erupted between the protesters and Trump’s guards.
     Protester Gonzalo Cruz Franco, a co-plaintiff, says that one guard barked for him to “Get out of here!” and to “Take that costume off!”
     After Cruz responded that he was in a “public place,” the guard “used both hands to violently shove” him “several feet” away, the lawsuit says.
     Trump’s director of security Keith Schiller “swiftly and menacingly” swiped Galicia’s sign, he says.
     When Galicia tried to retrieve it, “Schiller swung around and struck Galicia with a closed fist on the head with such force that it caused Galicia to stumble backwards,” according to the lawsuit.
     An unidentified guard then “placed his hands around Galicia’s neck in an effort to choke him,” the complaint says.
     The activists demand punitive damages against Trump, his campaign committee, Schiller and the guards for assault and battery, the destruction of their property, and tortious interference with political speech.
     They are represented by Benjamin Dictor of Eisner & Associates, P.C.
     The Trump Organization did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

%d bloggers like this: