Protester Responds After Driver Is Not Charged For Allegedly Running Them Over

Sunday, July 26th 2020, 10:33 pm
By: Amelia Mugavero

TULSA, Okla. -

A person who was injured on Interstate 244 during protests in May said justice has not been served. The Tulsa County District Attorney recently decided not to charge the driver of the truck and trailer. ​

Protester Carmyn Taylor said the truck driver ran over their legs and has hired an attorney to file a civil lawsuit this week against the driver. 

"Everything happened so fast," Taylor said.  

Taylor said it has been a slow recovery since the incident on May 31. They said the day left not only physical injuries, but emotional scars as well in the form of anxiety and PTSD. 

"I remember looking behind me and watching the tires all over my legs,” Taylor said. “And I keep playing that image of the tires going over my legs and my head all the time.”

Taylor claimed to have been wedged beneath the truck and a bicycle when the truck started moving towards the crowd. 

"In that instance, it was like immediate terror because that’s when he started speeding up," Taylor said.

Taylor said the incident fractured one of their legs and sprained both ankles, forcing them to a wheelchair for several weeks. 

Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler released a memo Thursday explaining his decision to not press charges on the driver. Kunzweiler said the family inside the truck was attacked by the crowd.

“Although the claim may be that this was a peaceful protest, there was nothing peaceful about the targeting and attack upon this family,” Kunzweiler wrote. 

During the Oklahoma Highway Patrol’s investigation, the family in the truck said they were in fear for their safety when the crowd swarmed around them. 

"The victim that I'm seeing are those occupants in that vehicle. They had a right to be there,” Kunzweiler wrote. “Their trip is interrupted by people who are on the highway, who don't have a right to be there.”

Taylor's attorney, Jonathan Nation, said the Tulsa County District Attorney’s office left out key details in his memo. 

“What’s most concerning is that there are multiple things in this report that aren’t being brought up,” Nation said. “I don’t see anywhere in the DA’s statement where the gentleman (driver) placed a gun on the dashboard — and that’s not in dispute. Also, a lot of the hits on the trailer were after the trailer was plowing through a crowd full of people and crushing my client’s legs.”

However, Kunzweiler said a protester motioned for the driver to follow another car through the crowd before other protesters surrounded the trailer. 

Taylor said the protesters were not the villains. They claimed to be the victims.

"We were there to hold people accountable for justice,” Taylor said. “We were there to help people and he (the driver) needed to be held accountable for that.” 

Kunzweiler confirmed there were at least two other people hurt during the incident, one of which who was paralyzed.

Nation said his client is the only protester who has come forward to take legal action.