Glenside man, 23, charged with assaulting Philly police captain at rally
Four people were arrested, but police have identified only two. One faces trial in federal court.
A Glenside man accused of hitting a city police officer and resisting arrest during Saturday's counter-protest of what critics called a right-wing rally at Independence Mall was released Monday pending a trial in federal court.
Brian Glantz, 23, was one of four people charged in the aftermath of Saturday's events, which prosecutors said drew about 50 people for a "We the People" rally and 500 counter-protesters.
The only other defendant whom authorities have publicly identified is Amber Viescas, 31, of West Philadelphia, another counter-protester, who was charged with interfering with an officer and violating a lawful order, a petty offense for which she received a citation.
Prosecutors said Glantz pushed on-duty officers at the rally and punched Philadelphia Police Capt. John O'Hanlon in a side of the head. As the arrest was being made, prosecutors said, Glantz continued to resist by grappling with and kicking the officers.
"Assaulting a law enforcement agent … is a crime that I take very seriously," U.S. Attorney William McSwain said in a statement.
The alleged infractions occurred around a set of rallies that had attracted attention in advance due to allegations that members of right-wing hate groups were planning to attend and commit violence, as had occurred in Charlottesville last year.
Glantz, who prosecutors said lives with his parents in Glenside, had been jailed since the weekend. He was released on his own recognizance pending trial.
Viescas, an IT coordinator at Villanova University, said after the court appearance that she fell to the ground and an officer bumped into her as police tried to move the crowd across the street. When Viescas did not move, the officer handcuffed her and moved her to a van. "I think they wanted to make an example of someone early," Viescas said.
One other person was arrested at the rally for failure to disperse, and another for failure to disperse and possession of marijuana. Philadelphia police declined Monday to release their names or details.