The street preachers claim they were physically attacked by a 17-year-old parade-goer and have the video to prove it.
“We often get misperceived and the hateful ones or the violent ones, but we don’t propagate violence, we don’t do violence to anybody, we just want to talk to people about the gospel,” Kristenea, a Spokane Street Preacher, said.
Kristenea and her fellow Spokane Street Preachers asked to omit their names for the story, claiming violent threats have been made against them.
Kristenea is the mother seen in a viral internet video, walking through the Spokane Valley Target, condemning them for their transgender bathroom policy. It’s that video the street preachers believe led to an assault against Kristenea and her pregnant 23-year-old daughter during the Spokane Pride Parade last month.
“When my daughter walked over to talk to her, that’s when the first hit came and I was trying to get her to leave the area then she started hitting me,” Kristenea said.
The girl who assaulted the pair was arrested and charged with assault. The preachers are now in the process of filing a lawsuit against the city and the parade organizers, OutSpokane.
“They infringed and violated our First Amendment right of free speech that’s a slam dunk,” Eddie, a Spokane Street Preacher, said.
Though they haven’t received a lawsuit yet, OutSpokane’s Chair, Michael Jepsen, is responding to the preachers’ claims.
“I feel a little bit sad for them in that they know they are losing the culture war and the LGBT community faces increasing welcomeness from society at large,” Jepsen said.
Jepsen said he was shocked and disappointment when he heard the group’s legal plans.