By Courage to Resist, November 7, 2008
On October 15, 2008, police attacked a peaceful gathering of Iraq Veterans Against the War and other demonstraters at Hofstra University in Long Island, the site of the presidential debate. Demonstrators were hoping to push the campaigns to address veterans’ concerns about the war in Iraq and inadequate benefits for returning troops. They were met with with violence from police, who rode horses into the crowd, trampling two peaceful demonstrators, including Nick Morgan, an Iraq Veteran and IVAW member, who suffered a shattered cheek bone after being stepped on by a horse. 15 demonstrators were arrested, including 10 IVAW members, and they face arraignment on Monday, November 10th for “Disorderly Conduct.” Sign this petition to show support for the Hempstead 15 and to call for an end to police repression of anti-war voices.
We, the undersigned, denounce and condemn the violent actions and gross misconduct of the Nassau County Police Department in Hempstead, Long Island. Specifically, we are citing the unprovoked attack unleashed upon a member of “Iraq Veterans Against the War,” who was acting within the first amendment right to “peacefully assemble” on the evening of October 15, 2008 at Hofstra University, the site of the last presidential debate.
Due to the unnecessary aggression of the Nassau County police towards peaceful demonstrators, where horses were wheeling out of control, we urge that all charges against the Iraq veterans and the other people arrested be dropped.
Iraq War Veteran Nick Morgan was peaceably standing on the sidewalk when he was unmercifully and unlawfully trampled by a Nassau County Police Department horse mounted by a Police Officer who provoked the horse to spin against the crowd on the sidewalk, thereby knocking down and stepping on the Iraq Veteran which action nearly killed him. He sustained a crushing blow to his head when the horse trampled his face, breaking his cheek bone in three places, his “orbital” (eye socket) was shattered, thus leaving his eye dangerously close to sinking into his sinus cavity over time without proper surgery.
People of conscience cannot and will not sit by and allow members of any police force who are here to protect and serve behave like criminals themselves.
Therefore, we demand justice for Nick Morgan. All charges against him must be dropped immediately, and a public apology be given by not only the Nassau County Police Department but the Mayor of Hempstead.
We will not tolerate these violent actions being inflicted upon anyone, especially a veteran who honorably served his Country.
Sign petition here: www.ipetitions.com/petition/justicefornick/
For more information about the Hempstead 15, visit: ivaw.org/node/4517