Arrests at anti-Islamic protest during Dearborn’s Arab International Festival
A small group of anti-Islamic protesters caused a ruckus at the Arab International Festival Friday, resulting in the arrest of several festival attendees.
The group, who identified themselves as the Bible Believers, held up signs referring to Islam as a “religion of murder” and urging Muslims to “repent” while standing in the festival’s free speech zone, located at Miller Road and Warren Avenue.
A group of counter-protesters and onlookers gathered around the area – some of them shouting at the Bible Believers and throwing water bottles, trash and shoes.
Wayne County and Detroit police, including mounted officers, quickly rallied to keep the public away from the anti-Islamic protesters. At least two people resisted, resulting in separate arrests.
Police were not able to confirm how many arrests were made at the festival.
The chaos at the Arab International Festival followed six arrests made earlier that day of protesters from the activist group By Any Means Necessary. Members of BAMN were cited with misdemeanor breach of peace charges after ignoring police demands to stop harassing Pastor Terry Jones as he attempted to walk from Dearborn City Hall to the festival.
The resistance against Jones was so great that eventually, Dearborn police escorted him and several followers away from the area in an unmarked police SUV. Jones had planned to continue his rally at the festival, but decided to cancel the event at the recommendation of police.