Therese Patricia Okoumou, 44 was arrested on Wednesday after she climbed the Statue of Liberty, and began a three-hour standoff with police.
Her Reason: She wanted to protest the current U.S. immigration policy.
Okoumou, was a part of a group of protesters and had declared that she wouldn’t come down until “all the children are released.” The stunt led to the evacuation of the landmark on the Fourth of July holiday.
Okoumou, pleaded not guilty to trespassing, disorderly conduct and interfering with governmental administration. After receiving three misdemeanor charges, Magistrate Judge Ona Wang ordered Okoumou to be released from federal custody.
Outside the court, Okoumou thanked the U.S. Park Police and the New York City Police Department’s Emergency Service Unit, for their professionalism, and the kindness that they showed her.
“At first she was being a little combative, then she was willing to cooperate with us. She actually apologized to us for having to go up and get her,” Officer Brian Glacken said in a new conference Wednesday evening.
In her statement, she noted that the government’s “draconian policy” on immigration had to end. Okoumou’s attorney, Rhidaya Shodhan Trivedi, also added that they were going to keep fighting until family separation is a thing of the past.
“In a democracy we do not put children in cages,” Okoumou told reporters. “The judge told me not to do it again. But I think the message was sent.”
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