August 22 2017

Burlington Man Among Those Arrested at Large Rally/Counter Protest in Boston on Saturday

By: Rich Hosford

A Burlington man was among 33 arrested at the “free speech rally” and counter-protest on the Boston Common this past weekend.

On Saturday thousands gathered on Boston Common in what was called by authorities a mostly peaceful pair of events. A small number were there as part of a “free speech” rally organized by the Boston Free Speech Coalition. A larger group, fearing the free speech rally was really a front for white nationalist ideas that were seen expressed in Charlottesville, Virginia, the week before, came to counter protest. In total authorities estimated 40,000 people were on the common and surrounding areas.

The Boston Police Department said in a statement that most of the people at the rallies were peaceful though a number of arrests were made of those who got out of line.

On, Saturday, August 19, 2017, 33 individuals were arrested for failing to behave in a respectful and responsible manner,” the BPD said in a statement. “In the days leading up to the event, both Mayor Walsh and Commissioner Evans asked, encouraged and urged all those attending today’s events to be on their best behavior and to embrace nonviolence over violence. Thankfully, the majority of those attending did just that. Unfortunately, not everybody understood the importance of good behavior.”

One of those arrested was William Papagianopoulos, 30, of Burlington, who was charged with Disturbing the Peace.

All the arrestees are set to appear in court this week.


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