FERGUSON, Mo. (CN) - In what even some fellow protesters criticized as an electioneering stunt, a Missouri state senator was arrested in Ferguson during a protest Monday night.
State Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, a Democrat, was released from jail Tuesday morning from a St. Ann jail after someone posted her $600 bond in Ferguson.
St. Ann has taken a large number of arrested protesters from Ferguson because Ferguson's jail is being renovated.
Nasheed was charged with violating a Ferguson ordinance that prohibits blocking a street.
Nasheed was arrested shortly after 8:30 p.m. Monday when she walked onto South Florissant Road in front of the Ferguson City Hall. She was taken into custody after ignoring several warnings to get on the sidewalk.
Nasheed told reporters that she came to Ferguson intending to be arrested. She said she wanted to send a message about peaceful protest.
"It's OK to protest, it's OK to exercise your First Amendment rights, it's OK to go to jail for a cause, but it's not OK to destroy communities," Nasheed told reporters.
"It's not OK to burn down businesses. It's not OK to protest violently in the name of Michael Brown. We all want justice, but we don't want violent protests."
Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson said Nasheed had a handgun on her when she was arrested.
Nasheed told reporters that she has a concealed carry permit and that she always carries a gun.
St. Ann Police Chief Aaron Jimenez told reporters that Ferguson asked St. Ann to give Nasheed a breathalyzer test, but she declined.
Nasheed told reporters she was not intoxicated and that the request was an attempt at "character assassination."
Brown's killing by a white Ferguson police officer on Aug. 9 has sparked daily, sometimes violent protests.
Nasheed's fellow protesters seemed far from inspired by her arrest.
Tony Rice, a protester, slammed Nasheed repeatedly on Twitter posts under his user name @search4swag.
"She was the only one marching by herself and some dude she marched with," Rice told the Post-Dispatch. "All of us protesting have been here all day. Then she shows up maybe 15 minutes ago, starting this crap. She was not over here protesting with us at all."
Hours after Nasheed's arrest, activist Anthony Shahid was met with boos when he gave a crowd an update on the lawmaker's arrest, the Post-Dispatch reported.Follow @@joeharris_stl
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