Brutal Arrest at Bank of America on International Womens Day

5 years ago

There was a protest yesterday at a bank as part of the observance of International Women's Day.

Protests to showcase how women are hurt by banks such as Bank of America and that these banks need to be "busted" up took place all over the country yesterday as part of IWD observances by individuals from several groups such as Women Occupy and The Rain Forest Action Network.

Rae Abileah 3/8/12 arrest IWD(CODEPINK Flickr image by Bud Korotzer used with CODEPINK permission.)

In New York, three protesters inside a Bank of America branch left when they were asked to leave. Just after they emerged from the bank, one of the protesters, Rae Abileah of Codepink, was grabbed by NYPD officers, and had her arm steadily twisted in a force-to the-ground police tactic. She repeatedly stated that she was not resisting arrest and that she has wrist and spine injuries and would they please not hurt her.

For more information:

You can read one of the most recent articles about alleged Bank of America mortgage fraud at:

Watch the arrest below. (Please note before playing: NSFW; protesters are in various states of toplessness.)

Seems that women being hurt by the Bank of America just took on a whole new meaning.

When I tried to reach Rae on the phone this morning, I got her voice mail suggesting I call Jodie Evans, co-founder of CODEPINK: Women for Peace. When I spoke with Evans, she informed me that Rae, the woman who is roughed up in the video, is still in jail. I don't know, but think the others arrested, including Medea Benjamin, are also still in jail. Evans has had no contact with Rae, a longtime member of CODEPINK, but she does know that Rae was not transported to the hospital.

Evans suggests that anyone who is upset by the treatment of these women on IWD call/contact Bank of America CEO and say: "Shame on you!" for their actions that fiscally and physically hurt women and families and deny citizens their First Amendment rights.

The best contact info I can find making such a contact is:

Brian Moynihan, President, CEO and Chairman
Bank of America

Matthew Task, Executive Relations
Office of the CEO

The irony of a Bank of America press release from yesterday touting their new program to invest in emerging women leaders is not lost on me.

Please also note that the B of A used taxpayer-funded police troops to use brute force to arrest a woman who truly is an emerging leader, here at home in the good old US of A, for exercising her First Amendment rights.

At least the corporate moguls of the Industrial Revolution (such as the Railroads) in the late 1800 and early 1900s used their own hired thugs, such as the Pinkertons, to suppress citizens expressing their First Amendment rights and did not make the people pay for their own abuse.

Protest seems to no longer be tolerated in the home of the free and the land of the brave as evidenced by this arrest and by yesterday’s House passage of the "Criminalizing Protest" bill, H.R. 347.

We can presume Rae was not injured in a way that would warrant hospitalization, can’t we?  

Why was such force used?

Why was a force to the ground arm twist even used?  

Why does the Bank of America experience no penalties and little to no investigation and no attempt to bring them to justice for fraud and fiduciary irresponsibility that has injured countless American families?  

What do you think of all this in light of IWD and the mortgage crisis?Note: I feel I have to disclose that the woman screaming in pain in the video a friend of mine.


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