Activists chain themselves together, block road to detention facility in Otay Mesa

Posted at 7:30 PM, Jun 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-24 19:38:10-04

OTAY MESA (KGTV) - Several demonstrations against the separation of migrant families at the border were held in San Diego Saturday.

In Otay Mesa, activists chained themselves together and blocked the road to the immigration and detention facility. 

Earlier in the day, they chanted in Spanish to those inside the facility. They chanted, "you are not alone." Activists are outraged at the treatment of immigrants and the separation of families. Some have compared the "zero tolerance" policy to the Holocaust, even putting a banner over the entrance sign, calling it a concentration camp. 

Violence erupted in the afternoon. One car pushed at least two people because protestors were blocking the road. A woman asked for medical aide, limping with a bandage on her shin. She was later released at the scene.

Another woman honked at a protestor who sat in front of her car. A man threw fruit at the woman's car, causing California Highway Patrol Officers to quickly arrest him. Protestors then blocked the woman's car for hours before she received an escort by law enforcement to another location.

The man arrested was seen earlier spitting on another car, writing an expletive in dust on the hood of that car, flipping off the driver and yelling at a third driver, opening and slamming their driver's side door.

Minutes after this incident, several law enforcement vehicles darted into the power plant nextdoor. Protestors ran to another location to block the cars. A man wearing a badge threw the protestor out of the way, he then turned around and tried to keep a van from leaving, ultimately sitting on the hood of the van as it drove down the road.

"They were trying to run over us really," protestor Eamon Johnston said. "It was incredibly scary, I think it’s horrific they let them drive away, just like they did. It’s unfortunate that these employees are getting caught in the middle of it, but it’s important to show, to stand together and to show a unified front against this horrific action on the part of the Trump administration."

Last week, President Donald Trump signed an executive order aimed at stopping family separations at the U.S. border. It says families should be kept together when U.S. law allows.

Around 9 p.m., after several warnings from CHP to disassemble, at least 7 people were arrested for blocking the roadway. They claim they are part of Generation Justice, an advocacy group.