Was BLM Protester Wrongfully Accused by Seaside Heights Police? OC Prosecutor Now Investigating

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SEASIDE HEIGHTS, NJ – What was initially reported as an assault by a Black Lives Matter protester in Seaside Heights might not have been what it seems.  The Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office has now taken over the investigation in the matter to determine what really happened.

Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office is currently reviewing the facts and circumstances surrounding an allegation of simple assault against Jamaal Holmes relative to an incident that occurred on the boardwalk in Seaside Heights, New Jersey, during the afternoon hours of Saturday, August 15, 2020. Any eyewitnesses to this incident are encouraged to contact Sgt. Thomas Tiernan of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 929-2027, extension 3149, or Detective David Margentino of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at extension 3246.

Here’s what we know so far:

SEASIDE HEIGHTS, NJ – In an earlier report today we reported that a man was arrested for assaulting a 68-year-old man during a BLM march in Seaside Heights. A new video shared with Shore News Network today shows the man who got hit may have been the one who provoked the assault.


https://www.facebook.com/vivaLeViral/videos/1257277451284591/

At a Black Lives Matter march, which sported an Antifa flag of about two dozen people took place Saturday on the boardwalk in Seaside Heights.  During the protest, the group chanted “Black Lives Matter” through a loudspeaker as they walked up and down the boardwalk.  At one point, according to Seaside Heights police, 28-year-old Jamal Holmes got into a verbal altercation with an unidentified 68-year-old man near Sherman Avenue and the Boardwalk.  Police said Holmes punch the man in the face.  He was arrested and charged with simple assault.

Now the new video released by witnesses this morning showed the man approached Holmes prior to the altercations.

“Take the mask off, you scumbag,” the man said to Holmes. It’s hard to tell what happened next, but the man appeared to reach out towards Holmes and the man appears to have been pushed in self-defense.

What led up to the altercation prior to the video is still missing.  Eyewitnesses detail a much different story than the one being told by the Seaside Heights Police Department.

A witness said the man showed up with a bicycle and initially was yelling at Boaz Matlack who was leading the march.  Two witnesses claim the man’s speech was slurred and he appeared intoxicated. After the man approached the group, Boaz said “Have a good day sir”, as part of the group’s  ‘kill them with kindness’ method.

“The [man] had came to our march and began heckling us like many others did but what he did unlike others was get physical,” said Aaliyah Castro. “I’m a young woman and this old man was in my face screaming profanities and had spit on me.”

Castro said she’s upset that Holmes is being portrayed as the aggressor when he was approached unsolicited by the man.

“We had people with opposing opinions yell towards us all day, it was expected and its totally fine,” she said  “After yelling at Boaz and the rest of us were marching past him is when he began yelling towards the small section of the crowd I was in and had the chance to get close enough to my face yelling that I was spit on.”

Castro said it was at that point was where the man decided to move toward the back of the small crowd where Holmes was at and it got physical.

“When he didn’t get a reaction from myself and the few around me is when he moved to Jamal and had swung at Jamal saying, “Get that f*cking mask off you face sc*mbag.”

Then, the man swung at Holmes which knocked his phone down and in the same motion, Jones pushed the man away and did not punch the man.

“The man was drunk, like I said he spit on me and smelled of alcohol, so when he was pushed for hitting someone he fell back and tripped on his bike,” Castro said. “In the video he can briefly be seen laying next to the basket of his bike after his fall.”

 

 

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