A woman was escorted down from the Statue of Liberty in New York on Wednesday after she scaled the bottom part of the national monument in protest of U.S. immigration policy, sparking a nearly 4-hour standoff with authorities, Fox News reports.
The woman, identified as Therese Okoumou, appeared to be sitting near the feet of Lady Liberty, roughly 25 feet above the monument’s observation point. She was apprehended by police on Wednesday, hours after she ascended the monument on Independence Day.
Video taken by news helicopters showed two New York Police Department officers, attached to tethers, climb up to the base around 6:15 p.m., the time of the park’s closing and apprehend the woman.
The park was shut down hours before closing time and was evacuated as a precaution, a National Park Service official told Fox News.
Brian Glacken, a detective with the NYPD Emergency Service Unit, said at a news conference late Wednesday that after receiving a call about the woman just after 3 p.m., officers made their way to the base of the statue, where the woman was located, and had a conversation with her.
“She was basically up there saying about the children in Texas. She just mentioned the kids in Texas,” Glacken said, confirming the woman was protesting the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy.
The detective said initially the woman “wasn’t friendly,” but eventually they developed “a rapport with her so she would trust us.”
A woman who lives in her building said she wears her passions on her sleeve.
the woman being rescued and arrested by security operatives
“She can be very nice and she can be a b—h,” said the woman, who declined to give her name. “When I vacuum, she bangs on the wall. I bang back, and she put a dent in my door.”
The two later reconciled after Okoumou took a liking to the woman’s dog.
The Trump administration has been heavily criticized by those on both sides of the aisle after thousands of minors were separated from their families at the border after crossing it illegally. After national outrage, President Trump signed an executive order in late June allowing families to remain together in detention.
The Statue of Liberty was gifted to the U.S. by France in 1886. It became a welcoming symbol for immigrants and refugees coming to the U.S.