DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — DeKalb County officials confirm four people were placed under arrest during a demonstration outside the county jail, Wednesday night.
Authorities charged 23-year-old Evan Himebaush, 20-year-old Cameron Michelson, 33-year-old Brandon Sowers, and 29-year-old Diana Settles with disorderly conduct and obstructing highways, streets, sidewalks or public passages. Both charges are misdemeanors.
Demonstrators with the Atlanta Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee gathered at the facility to protest what they claimed are poor conditions inside the jail.
"People locked up at DeKalb County Jail are in a crisis," the group wrote on their event page. "We will not stand by while people are mistreated behind bars."
"The food they eat is contaminated with mold, and so is the air they breathe. Their cell blocks are infested with flies and other insects. People are getting sick and being refused adequate medical help," the group asserted. "Those who speak out are being attacked and isolated by guards. We cannot let this continue."
According to the DeKalb County Sheriiff's Office, about 85 people marched from the Kensington MARTA station and onto Memorial Drive and sidewalks.
Video from the scene also showed inmates waving towels against their windows as protesters demonstrated outside the jail.
Law enforcement blocked portions of Memorial Drive during the demonstration, which ended around 9 p.m.
The demonstration was largely calm, but protesters and police briefly clashed as officers swarmed one man to arrest him.
Deputies said the arrests were made after several participants refused to comply with repeated directions by law enforcement regarding pedestrian presence on the roadway.
“It is unfortunate that the groups involved chose not to meet with this office to address their allegations," said Sheriff Jeffrey Mann. "We believe that many of these young people are very well-intentioned. The problem is that they are reacting emotionally and to a barrage of misinformation provided by seriously unreliable sources. We would really like them to learn the facts about how we fulfill our constitutional mandate to serve the public safety needs of this community and those of the more than 1,800 individuals currently in our custody.”
The sheriff's office worked other agencies as well.