Councilmember cited after video showing confrontation with protesters, police say

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FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE) — Fresno City Councilmember Miguel Arias has been cited pursuant to a citizens arrest following a confrontation between him and a group of protesters outside his home, according to Fresno Police.

Video posted to Facebook shows a group, led by political activist Ben Berquam, turning up at Arias’ home on Tuesday. The footage shows Arias asking them to leave. He then shoves Berquam and knocks a cell phone out of the hand of another man.

Officers say Arias was cited for three counts of misdemeanor battery. Policy dictates that, so long as the suspect is cooperative, a citation is issued instead of the suspect been booked. A cited court date has been provided.

In an interview with KSEE24 News, Arias said the protesters were banging on his front door when they arrived.

“These are people who are known to be second amendment advocates and who have made threats against my personal safety in the past. So I was not going to take any chance of letting them come within ten feet of my kids.”

The confrontation between the councilmember and the protestors prompted police to be stationed at the homes of every one of Fresno’s councilmembers, as well as the mayor and city manager. Officers from both Fresno Police and Clovis Police are helping maintain security.

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