Four protesters were arrested - one of whom was pepper-sprayed - near
Anthony Guglielmi, the Police Department's chief spokesman, said the protesters locked arms and refused to allow trucks to enter a construction site at the intersection of Rutland Avenue and Eager Street. Police said organizers told protesters over a megaphone to stand their ground as police ordered them to move to a "safe location."
Among those arrested was the organizer of the protest, 46-year-old Richie Armstrong, of Northwest Baltimore. Police said another man, 42-year-old Thomas Threatt, was pepper-sprayed by an officer because he resisted arrest.
The group behind the protest was Community Churches United, which has been criticizing what it sees as a lack of local hiring on the new construction related to theEast Baltimore Development Inc.project.
A previous protest in December drew 200 marchers; none were arrested.
'We are out here fighting for construction jobs," Armstrong said at the time. "We want to work. We are ready to work, and we have a lot of people qualified for these jobs."
According to reports, Armstrong was affiliated with a jobs protest in DC last fall, demanding jobs for local residents at a City Center project.