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Idaho activist suspected of vandalism injured during arrest

Terry Wilson
Ada County Sheriff's Office
Terry Wilson

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A Black Lives Matter organizer in Boise who is a former university professor was injured this week during his arrest by police in Boise who said they believed he was involved in the vandalism of an Abraham Lincoln statue.

Officers with the Boise Police Department arrested Terry Wilson, 37, on charges of misdemeanor vandalism on Tuesday, the Idaho Press reported Thursday. Police said Wilson fled inside a home and resisted arrest.

Wilson argued his arrest at the home of his children's grandmother was unnecessarily violent, saying police entered the property, forced him outside and held him on the ground in front of his family who videotaped the arrest.

Wilson, who is a cancer survivor and has a port in his chest, said he was worried the port would rip open from being forced on the ground. Medical records show Wilson was given a CT scan on his head and spine, had X-rays taken on his shoulder and hip, suffered a hip contusion, a gash across his shoulder and multiple bruises.

The Boise Police Department said they believed Wilson was involved in vandalizing the "Seated Lincoln" statue in Julia Davis Park in Boise. Police said the statue was marked with nonpermanent red chalk on Feb. 1 and left with feces and signs.

Wilson said the arresting officer did not identify himself and did not indicate he had a warrant before making the arrest. Boise police denied the allegations, stating that an officer arrived to serve the warrant, causing Wilson to reenter the home, which qualifies as resisting arrest, which then caused the officer to ask for backup.

Court records say Wilson was also charged with possession of marijuana and paraphernalia and resisting arrest. Wilson said he was carrying a cannabis vape pen on him which he uses for treatment with cancer in remission, noting that he will accept the consequences since Idaho law makes no exceptions for medical marijuana use.

Wilson is being represented by an attorney with the National Lawyer's Guild. He was released from Ada County Jail on March 23 after posting $900 bond.

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