President Donald Trump called the woman who climbed the Statue of Liberty in protest of his administration’s immigration policies a “clown” Thursday evening.
“You saw that clown yesterday on the Statue of Liberty,” the president said at a campaign rally in Montana. “You see the guys that went up there. I wouldn’t have done it. I would’ve said, ‘Let’s get some nets, and let’s wait till she comes down. Just get some nets.’”
Therese Patricia Okoumou, 44, climbed the statue after participating in an “Abolish ICE” protest on Liberty Island Wednesday. She was brought down by the NYPD’s Emergency Service Unit several hours later.
After pleading not guilty in federal court Thursday, Okoumou called the administration’s immigration policy “draconian.”
“In a democracy we do not put children in cages,” Okoumou said.
Under Trump’s “zero tolerance” policy, immigrant children were separated from their parents and detained after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.
Okoumou also quoted former first lady Michelle Obama: “Our beloved first lady that I care so much about said, ‘When they go low, we go high.’ And I went as high as I could.”
Okoumou faces charges of trespassing, interference with government agency functions and disorderly conduct, the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of New York said.
With Lauren Cook