Man Climbs Frederick Douglass Bridge in Apparent Abortion Rights Action

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Video: Courtesy Corey Crim. Used with permission. Twitter: @Crimster

The new Frederick Douglass Bridge was shut down in both directions Friday morning after a man climbed to the top of a central arch in an apparent call for action to protect the right to access abortion. He remained on the bridge overnight, using the green banner he hung from the top of the arch as sunshield and blanket.

A Twitter account purporting to belong to Guido Reichstadter tweeted a photo apparently taken from the top of one of the bridge’s metal arches. The tweet calls for people to take to the streets until Congress takes action to protect voting rights.

In tweets, Reichstadter has called on fathers to join him in the streets to join him in an act of mass civil disobedience to protest attacks on abortion rights.

This would not be Reichstadter’s first protest against the court’s decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade. On June 6, Reuters reported that a man, who was later identified as Reichstader, had chained himself to the fence around the US Supreme Court, and held up a green banner with the information for abortion rights activist group Rise Up For Abortion, which tweeted video of the protest.

Riechstadter includes a link to the group’s website in his twitter bio. The Rise Up For Abortion twitter feed includes photo and coverage of similar actions by others at the Supreme Court and other locations.

First responders were on the scene, using helicopters and water craft. A spokesperson for the Metroplitan Police Department (MPD) said “MPD is responding to the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge for the report of a person in crisis. There are no additional updates at this time.”

UPDATE, 2:08 p.m. Saturday: Reichstadter descended from the bridge at 1 p.m. Saturday, June 25. He was arrested but, in social media posts, vowed to continue peaceful disruptions in support of abortion rights.

The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) issued a traffic alert, noting both lanes of the Frederick Douglas Memorial Bridge (FDMB) is currently shut down. “The closure is needed for safety concerns involved with protest activity and will remain in effect until further notice.”