CHICAGO (CBS) — Activists seeking a trauma center at the University of Chicago Medical Center have demanded the immediate release of nine protesters who were arrested Wednesday night after barricading themselves inside school’s administration building.
The protesters locked themselves inside Levi Hall, 5801 S. Ellis Av., by securing the doors with bicycle locks. They also disabled the elevators, and said they would not come out until the university president agreed to meet them to discuss opening a trauma center.
The university called in the Chicago Fire Department to break through a wall and window. Firefighters used a power saw, axes, and crowbars to get into the building. Nine protesters were led away in handcuffs.
Activist Natalie Naculich laughed when asked why the protesters shouldn’t face charges, since it seemed they wanted to get arrested.
“I think that, because these students and community members are standing up for what is right, and standing up for holding up the importance of black lives, and the need for a trauma center on the South Side, they don’t deserve charges,” she said.