Most of the people accused of using force to free an arrested immigration protester at the Murrieta Border Patrol station have posted bail, as the nation talked about last week’s outrage against buses carrying women and children who may be illegally in the United States.
Murrieta Police reported the Border Patrol station was quiet Sunday, with 10 protesters quietly milling about amongst TV trucks. Barricades and parking restrictions remained up in the area.
Five people were arrested Friday afternoon, when a law officer was attacked as he arrested a possible assault suspect.
They were charged with lynching, which under California’s 150-year-old penal code is defined as freeing a lawfully arrested person during a riot. Janet Mathieson, 22, of Claremont, was also suspected of battery on a police officer.
Police allege Mathieson jumped on the back of a Murrieta officer Friday, when he was arresting someone linked to an assault that occurred away from the protest site. Mathieson became uncooperative during questioning and was about to be handcuffed for allegedly obstructing the officer in the course of his investigation, police said.
At that point, Pouyan Bokaei, 33, of Maryland, allegedly tried freeing Mathieson and, and the officer momentarily let go of her when he tried arresting Bokaei.
Jessica Rey, 25, of Menifee, and Salvador Chavez, 24, of Los Angeles, were also brought in for suspicion of lynching after the fracas.
There was no jail record Sunday for Bokaei, but the records show all four others were freed Saturday after each posted $10,000 bail.
All of the suspects arrested were booked for suspicion of obstructing a peace officer, a misdemeanor, but they were also booked on suspicion of lynching, the obscure felony charge.
One other person, Larry Spencer, a 54-year-old Hemet resident, had also been arrested earlier during Friday’s protests, but he was cited and released on a misdemeanor count of disobeying an officer.
The arrests highlighted the anger and emotion that brewed throughout Independence Day as protesters either sympathetic towards, or against, undocumented immigrants waited for a trio of buses carrying 140 detainees to enter the federal station in Murrieta. The buses never arrived and were diverted to San Ysidro.
Friday’s protests followed one on Tuesday where angry people blocked the buses from entering the federal facility. The protests were sparked when federal officials announced earlier in the week that the buses would be arriving from Texas every 72 hours.
Meanwhile, the Murrieta developments were the talk of the nation on the Sunday morning talk shows.
— City News Service