FREDERICKSBURG, Va. (WJLA) – “We can’t do anything ma’am,” said a Fredericksburg 911 dispatcher. “The city told us that this is a sanctioned event.”
Fredericksburg Police are now responding to the community after a 911 dispatcher told a woman with a baby in the car with her that they couldn’t respond as protesters were jumping on her vehicle while she was trying to get home safely.
“You know this is going to get dangerous,” the caller said. “I got a kid here.”
“We would suggest you call up city hall to let them know about your frustrations” the dispatcher said.
Sara Kirkpatrick, the public information officer with Fredericksburg Police released a statement saying: “Since this unfortunate situation, we have had several conversations with the caller. We have also opened a criminal investigation the following day to identify the person who jumped on her car.”
“If a person dials 911 for concerns about a demonstrator in the roadways, they will be notified that an officer is staged one block away,” said Kirkpatrick. “If you express concern for your safety, you can be certain an officer will respond to assist you.”
On Thursday, Mayor Mary Greenlaw issued an apology to protesters in the city council meeting. However, some community members are angry and say the victim in the 911 call also deserved an apology.
“I am personally sorry,” she said at Tuesday’s City Council meeting. “The people in our streets on the night of May 31 were motivated to protest by righteous anger and genuine pain. I know that the use of tear gas shocked and frightened them. I apologize to those who went through this fearful experience.”