Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

City manager to meet with youth protest leader

NEW PORT RICHEY — After getting an earful about a May incident between police and protesters at Sims Park, City Manager John Schneiger agreed Tuesday to sit down with the leader of the protest group.

Zachary Mitrovich, founder of the American Youth Movement 22211, blasted the recent review that found New Port Richey Police handled the matter appropriately. Mitrovich told City Council members on Tuesday evening that police infringed on his group's right to "peaceful demonstration" by threatening to cite them for trespassing.

Event organizers had invited the youth group to the May 21 Rock the Park, a daylong concert to benefit the Center for Independence and a local Marine who lost his legs in Afghanistan. But when the youth group showed up carrying protest signs and wearing American flag bandanas on their faces, organizers wanted them gone.

New Port Richey Police Chief Jeffrey Harrington reviewed the incident last month and said his officers stood by as event organizers asked the youths to voluntarily leave the park. Harrington said officers never issued a trespass warning or citation.

Mitrovich told the council that's "a bald-faced lie." In a video taken by another American Youth member, an officer tells the protesters they could face trespassing charges, Mitrovich told the council.

New Port Richey resident Daniel Callaghan, whose complaint about the incident led to Harrington's review, told the council that video "clearly undercuts the chief's view."

Schneiger told the council he would seek to meet with Mitrovich and Callaghan about the incident and report to the council on his findings. Mayor Bob Consalvo agreed to that plan of action.

Harrington told the Times he would be receptive to a meeting, but declined to discuss the specific comments Mitrovich and Callaghan made to the council.

Since the police department falls under his chain of command, Schneiger said he felt it necessary to offer a meeting to discuss the incident. He said Harrington may attend, as well as the city attorney.

"I'm comfortable with it," Schneiger said of the chief's ruling absolving his officers. "But I am always willing to sit down with anyone who has a concern."

City manager to meet with youth protest leader 09/07/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, September 7, 2011 9:23pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up


    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  2. Tampa Bay Times honored for top investigative story in Gerald Loeb annual business awards


    The Tampa Bay Times was a co-winner in the investigative category for one of the highest honors in business journalism.

    Tampa Bay Times current and former staff writers William R. Levesque, Nathaniel Lash and Anthony Cormier were honored in the investigative category for their coverage of "Allegiant Air" in the 60th Anniversary Gerald Loeb Awards for Distinguished Business and Financial Journalism. 


  3. Pasco woman gives birth to child fathered by 11 year old, deputies say


    A Port Richey woman was arrested Tuesday, nearly three years after deputies say she gave birth to a child fathered by an 11-year-old boy.

    Marissa Mowry, 25, was arrested Tuesday on charges she sexually assaulted an 11-year-old and gave birth to his child. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. For good of the Rays, Tim Beckham should embrace move to second

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — The acquisition of slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria said a lot of things, most notably that the Rays are serious about making in-season moves to bolster their chances to make the playoffs, with a reliever, or two, next on the shopping list.

    PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 27:  Tim Beckham #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates with teammates after scoring during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) 700011399
  5. St. Petersburg showdown: Kriseman faces Baker for first time tonight at the Rev. Louis Murphy Sr.'s church

    Local Government

    A standing-room-only crowd packed a Midtown church banquet hall Tuesday to witness the first face-off between Mayor Rick Kriseman and former mayor Rick Baker in what is a watershed mayoral contest in the city's history.

    Former Mayor Rick Baker, left, is challenging incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman, right, to become St. Petersburg mayor.