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Confirmed: DAPL Water Protector Might Lose Arm Because of Police Grenade, Here’s How to Help Her

Confirmed: DAPL Water Protector Might Lose Arm Because of Police Grenade, Here’s How to Help Her

Confirmed: DAPL Water Protector Might Lose Arm Because of Police Grenade, Here’s How to Help Her
November 23
17:59 2016


Confirmed: DAPL Water Protector Might Lose Arm Because of Police Grenade, Here’s How to Help Her

Claire Bernish November 22, 2016

In an act of hubris defying logic, the Morton County Sheriff’s Department now claims Sunday night’s vicious offensive against water protectors opposed to the Dakota Access Pipeline — during which two tribal elders suffered cardiac arrest, a rubber bullet struck a 13-year-old girl in the face, and a young woman carrying water to others had her arm nearly blown off — is the fault of the activists.

Worse, the sheriff claims officers did not use a low-powered water cannon against the unarmed crowd of around 400 people — despite live footage from the scene so explicitly proving that, even corporate media called the assertion to task.

Worse still, the sheriff balked at the accusation police used concussion grenades, and Sophia Walinsky — the water protector whose horrifically mangled arm might have be amputated — suffered that injury because she must have been incompetently rigging an improvised explosive.

“It wasn’t from our law enforcement, because we didn’t deploy anything that should have caused that type of damage to her arm,” contended Morton County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman, Maxine Herr, apparently ignoring the continual volley of various exploding canisters of tear gas and other grenades. “We’re not sure how her injury was sustained.”

The sheer audacity required for this level of blame-dodging would almost be humorous if it weren’t for the appalling reality that people’s lives transformed dramatically and permanently Sunday night.

According to the Los Angeles Times, “Herr suggested that the woman may have been injured while protesters were ‘rigging up their own explosives’ — propane bottles to be thrown at police. None of those propane bottles exploded, and ‘the only explosion the officers heard was on the protesters’ side,’ Herr said.”

Obviously, the sound of an explosion in the crowd would be the case — considering police indiscriminately launched countless canisters of tear gas and concussion grenades, which then exploded amongst the group of water protectors trapped on Backwater Bridge.

To wit, Herr told the Times no one was arrested for either making or throwing explosives.

Although no footage has yet emerged, if any exists, of the moment Walinsky’s arm was shredded down to the bone, the chances the sheriff’s explanation have any basis in truth are effectively nil. Witnesses on the scene said the young woman had been seen bringing water to the group under attack by police at the time the projectile struck her squarely in the arm — clearly not the act of someone preparing to throw an explosive device at officers.

In fact, evidence has emerged the sheriff’s department’s claim is an outright lie. Unicorn Riot, which reported from the scene that night and is camping with Standing Rock Sioux and hundreds of other water protectors, returned to Backwater Bridge on Monday and, along with detonated tear gas canisters, discovered remnants of at least one Stinger grenade.

From the description on the website for the Safariland Group, which manufactures these grenades — as well as the tear gas canisters and several other spent devices found at the scene — Stingers could easily cause the type of traumatic injury Walinsky endured:

“The Stinger OC Grenade is a maximum effect device that delivers four stimuli for psychological and physiological effects: rubber pellets, light, sound, and OC. The Stinger® Grenade is most widely used as a crowd management tool by Law Enforcement and Corrections. The Stinger® Grenade has an initial 1.5 second delay that initiates fuze assembly separation, followed by another .5 second delay before the blast which is sufficient to project the rubber balls and chemical agent in a 50 foot radius.”

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