Activist Detained and Removed From DeSantis Press Conference in Jacksonville

Police handcuffed and removed a man from a Duval County Government building in Jacksonville, Florida, where Gov Ron DeSantis was due to give a press conference on January 4.

The man was identified in social video and local news reports as Ben Frazier, a Jacksonville-based activist and founder of the Northside Coalition of Jacksonville.

Videos filmed by Christina Kittle, a community organizer and cofounder of the Jacksonville Community Action Committee, show staff inside the venue telling Frazier he must leave and police escorting him out of the building in handcuffs.

“Tell [DeSantis] to stop running and hiding and meet with the people,” Frazier said in one video filmed by Kittle.

“You’ve been asked to leave. It’s a secure facility … You’re trespassing,” a woman tells Frazier. “We’re asking everyone who is non-credentialed to leave.”

In response to another staff member, Frazier said: “We’re here to hold the governor accountable.”

First Coast News reported Frazier said he was held in a police cruiser and then issued a citation.

The press conference was canceled, but DeSantis held one in Naples later to discuss Omicron, COVID testing, and treatment, local media reported.

Storyful has contacted the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office for comment. Credit: Christina Kittle via Storyful

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