Witness video disputes GSP report over state lawmaker’s arrest for knocking on governor’s door

A witness who captured a video of the controversial arrest of Democratic state Rep. Park Cannon said she spoke with investigators about what she described as false allegations against the lawmaker.

Channel 2′s Michael Seiden has obtained a new video of the incident that activists said shows something entirely different than what was detailed in an incident report by the Georgia State Patrol.

Tamara Stevens shot the video as Cannon was arrested last week. She told Seiden that she was disgusted with how one of the state troopers attempted to compare what happened at the state Capitol

to the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol in January.

Channel 2 Action News has contacted GSP, requesting surveillance video of the incident, but the agency won’t release it, citing the ongoing investigation.

Stevens said her video speaks for itself.

“To compare six women holding cardboard posters silently protesting with the violent insurrectionist that attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6 is disgusting,” Stevens said.

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It’s been nearly a week since she captured the video showing Cannon’s arrest. The political activist told Seiden that she is still fuming, accusing state troopers of violating Cannon’s First Amendment rights.

“I come from a family of law enforcement and to know these officers deliberately put into the official record — fallacies — I took it personally,” Stevens said.

She gave Seiden the video she said she shot while she and five other women protested peacefully outside Gov. Brian Kemp’s office while he and several fellow Republican lawmakers gathered behind closed doors to witness the signing of the elections bill into law.

In the video, Cannon is seen knocking softly on the door of the governor’s ceremonial office when state troopers confront her, threatening to arrest her if she doesn’t stop.

“She said, ‘I would like to witness it because this affects my constituents,’” Stevens said.

State troopers eventually arrest Cannon and lead her away in handcuffs. But at no point during the video do you see Cannon stomp on a trooper’s foot.

There is also no video evidence of a rowdy and out-of-control crowd that’s threatening the safety of the governor and his wife.

But when you read through the 13-page incident report by GSO, Seiden noticed stark differences.

In the incident report, one of the troopers writes:

“I felt that if I did not take action, the other protestors would have been emboldened to commit similar acts. The events of January 6, 2021 at the U.S. Capitol were in the back of my mind. I didn’t want the protestors to attempt to gain entry into a secure part of the Capitol. I believed Cannon’s actions of obstructing law enforcement in front of agitated protestors to constitute a breach of the peace.”

Another state trooper accuses Cannon of stomping on his foot.

“Cannon was wearing high heels and stomped on my right foot several times while we were trying to get her out. She also stomped Sgt. Womble’s foot as well,” the report read.

The incident report also included photos of what investigators said show a trooper’s bruised foot.

“It’s unfortunate that a sitting state representative would actually stomp and kick a Georgia State Patrol officer,” Kemp said about the incident last week.

The report also accuses protesters of threatening the safety of the governor and first lady. A trooper said he got a call from a staff member who, “in panic he told me to lock the office down and move the Governor and First Lady from the Ceremonial Office as the side door was shaking so violently, he felt it would be breached.”

The Fulton County District Attorney’s Office stated that as of right now, Georgia State Patrol has taken out only arrest warrants.

The DA’s office has not charged Cannon with anything yet. The DA’s office has asked for all of the evidence that GSP collected and to turn those over to them. It’s also interviewing witnesses and will then make a decision.