Rockford Police make 17 arrests following Friday, Saturday protests

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford authorities announced charges against 17 people arrested at protests in downtown on Friday and Saturday.

“The First Amendment is very clear,” said Winnebago County State’s Attorney Marilyn Hite Ross, saying all Americans have the right to peaceably assemble. “[It] does not give unbridled freedom to infringe on the rights of others.”

On Friday, several protesters were arrested after blocking traffic on E. State Street near the Rockford City Market Pavilion.

“Individuals were infringing on the rights of others to have safe passageway on roadways within the county,” Hite Ross said.

Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana added, “You have the right to protest, but the second that becomes unlawful…becomes criminal…we’re gonna stop that situation from happening.”

City Market organizers had called off this week’s event after disruptions from protesters over the past several weeks.

Elliot Dempsey, 22, was charged with Mob Action.

Elliot Dempsey. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Larissa Walston, 23, was charged with Mob Action and Aggravated Battery on a Public Way.

Larissa Walston. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Alison Lamantia, 25, was charged with Mob Action.

Alison Lamantia. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Scott Garwick, 68, was charged with Mob Action.

Scott Garwick. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Stephen Tuite, 37, was charged with Mob Action and Resisting Arrest.

Stephen Tuite. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Terry Patterson, 45, was charged with Mob Action.

Terry Patterson. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Martha Ebner, 63, was charged with Mob Action and Resisting Arrest.

Martha Ebner. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Dylan Mitchell, 26, was charged with Aggravated Battery to a Police Officer and Resisting Arrest Causing Injury.

Dylan Mitchell. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Dayna Schultz, 23, was charged with Aggravated Assault to a Police Officer, Aggravated Battery to a Police Officer and Resisting Arrest.

Dayna Schultz. Photo: Rockford Police Department

William Gettings, 22, was charged with Aggravated Battery, Disorderly Conduct, and Resisting Arrest.

William Gettings’ mugshot was not available.

Leslie Rolfe, 28, was charged with Mob Action and Obstruction of Police Officers.

Leslie Rolfe. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Former Rep. Litesa Wallace bonded several protesters out of jail who had been arrested Friday night.

Wallace, a Democrat and former member of the Illinois House of Representatives, confirmed on Facebook that she was accepting donations to her cash app to pay for the inmates release from the Winnebago County Jail.

On Saturday, several more protesters were detained outside the Winnebago County Justice Center, following a pro-police “Back the Blue” rally.

Anjanette Johnson, 43, was charged with Disorderly Conduct and Resisting Arrest.

Anjanette Johsnon. Photo: Rockford Police Departrment

Joel Cochran, 29, was charged with Mob Action.

Joel Cochran. Photo: Winnebago County Jail

Brendon Rabitt, 23, was charged with Mob Action.

Brendon Rabitt. Photo: Rockford Police Department

Samuel Cornn, 42, was charged with Criminal Damage to Property and Resisting a Police Officer.

Samuel Cornn. Photo: Winnebago County Jail

Michael Riggs, 20, was charged with Aggravated Battery to a Police Officer and Resisting Arrest.

Michael Riggs. Photo: Winnebago County Jail

Catherine Sneed, 24, was charged with Mob Action and Resisting a Police Officer.

Catherine Sneed. Photo: Winnebago County Jail

“We’ve tolerated people who want to push it right to the line. And now, they’re going to get arrested. They’re going to continue to get arrested,” said Rockford Police Chief Dan O’Shea.

“Officers showed tremendous restraint against actions that most people probably wouldn’t,” he added.

The protest groups are self-described “police abolitionist” groups who have staged demonstrations against alleged police brutality by the Rockford Police Department, specifically in response to arrests made at a riot outside of the District 1 Headquarters on May 30th. A police review board concluded the officers were within policy guidelines in their use of force that night.


For more local news, download the MyStateline app (iOS) or (Android).

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram!

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest News Video

Trending Stories