Let's recap. Remember Josha Ude, the 23 year old grad student from Africa who had the misfortune of sightseeing while black?
Huntsville police spokesman Harry Hobbs said off-duty officers arrested 23-year-old Joshua Chukwuedozie Ude on Sunday, Oct. 27, on charges of resisting arrest and criminal trespassing, following reports of disruptive conduct during a church service at First Baptist Church, located at 600 Governors Drive.In all fairness First Baptist Church said that's not exactly what happened.
Here's the complete police statement from Hobbs:
"Church members contacted officers working at the church regarding suspicious behavior by Ude and his two adult male companions. Witnesses told police that the three men entered the church after the 11 a.m. service began. One of the men remained in the sanctuary hallway while Ude and another man walked to the front row and began videotaping the pastor and congregation. The three men left the church building on their own accord before the service concluded.
Police approached the three men as they left the building to inquire about their activities. During that conversation, Ude became uncooperative, refused to leave, and was subsequently arrested. Ude's companions, who were also detained by police, videotaped the arrest, posted it to You Tube within 30 minutes and contacted local media. The video does not show the events leading up to Ude's arrest."
"Initial review of the posted videotapes indicate the officers used appropriate techniques under the circumstances,"Chief Lewis Morris said. "However, I have instructed our Internal Affairs division to investigate any alleged use of excessive force during the arrest of Mr. Ude."
On Sunday, October 27th, three men were observed taking photographs outside the church of the mosaic on the front of our building. One man entered the building, was welcomed by our ushers and invited to join the service which was already in progress. Initially, he declined, but later two of the three young men entered the sanctuary approximately 40 minutes after the service had begun, walked down the center aisle and sat in the front pew. Our pastor, Dr. David Hull, was already preaching the sermon at this point. One of the men removed a cell phone and appeared to be videotaping and/or taking photographs. At no time were the men confronted or asked to leave the service. They remained in the service for approximately 10 minutes, at which time they got up, walked out the center aisle and left the service. The third young man remained in the hallway engaged in conversation with our ushers. After leaving the building on their own initiative, an incident occurred in the parking lot involving the young men and uniformed police officers.You can watch the entire take down here, but if the good people of Charlestons' Mother Emmanuel AME Church had profiled Dylan Strom Roof instead of welcoming him into the house of the Lord with open arms they might be alive today.
First Baptist Church has received many inquiries from concerned members of the public, especially pertaining to videos of the incident which have been posted to YouTube by one or more of these young men. Some have speculated that First Baptist Church asked these men to leave the service because of the way they were dressed. First Baptist Church did not ask these men to leave the service at any time. First Baptist Church welcomes all people who wish to worship and attend our services, and does not have any type of dress code.
EYE am back.