AURORA – As the Aurora City Council demands accountability from police for their actions during Saturday’s protest, one city council member is under fire for not obeying police orders at the protest.
FOX31 obtained Aurora police body-worn camera footage showing Councilmember Alison Coombs in a face-off with officers. The time stamp on the footage was 8:27 p.m., 12 minutes after Aurora police issued an order to disperse. Wearing a mask covered by a bandana, Coombs was among the group refusing to leave.
Marc Sears, the Fraternal Order of Police president for Lodge 49, which represents Aurora police officers, said, “She is given numerous commands to move back and she refuses to move and she actually starts arguing with the officers. Just three minutes prior to that is when officers were taking rocks and bottles and sticks and plastic bottles with unknown substances.”
Sears said the officers were trying to get peaceful protesters to move to a nearby parking lot. He said he is frustrated by the lack of support.
Coombs was criticized two weeks ago for posting an anti-police post on her personal Facebook page.
“We’ve had multiple officers leave, retire, quit, resign, this week alone. She has no idea how awful she is making officers feel,” Sears said.
Regardless, Sears says at the protest, he believes Coombs demonstrated a lack of leadership that night and could have been arrested.
“She’s not above the law. Elected official or not, she should act appropriately. And if she doesn’t agree with our actions at the time of the event, we have so many different ways you can complain. If you’re a true leader, you will identify yourself and try to encourage the crowd to do what the officers are telling you to do,” he said.
Coombs said she didn’t believe she did anything wrong and that she was asking officers what the others did wrong.
She also said, “I was standing with my community that was — in my view — being forced off public property while exercising their First Amendment rights.”