Reporters threatened with arrest during Tennessee protest

Capitol View
Posted at 3:25 PM, Apr 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-17 16:25:00-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — An ongoing protest outside Gov. Bill Lee's office in the Tennessee Statehouse has raised concerns after reporters were warned they risked arrest if they did not leave the building.

State troopers instructed reporters to leave the Capitol Tuesday evening, saying the building was closed to the public. The order was given while four protesters were outside Lee's office seeking a meeting with the Republican to discuss a lawmaker accused of sexual misconduct.

The women spent the night in the Capitol as part of their demonstration. They were still posted outside Lee's office on Wednesday.

Democratic lawmakers, victims' rights groups and open government advocates objected to the removal of the press.

Chris Walker, Lee's communication director, told The Tennessean troopers followed standard protocol but the governor's office did not condone threatening reporters.