Charges dropped against Black Lives Matter activist for Confederate flag arson

COLORADO SPRINGS — An arson charge was dropped today against Patricia Cameron, the Black Lives Matter activist from Manitou Springs who participated in a July 4 burning of a Confederate flag in a park, according to her and her attorney.

In late July, an officer rustled Cameron out of bed shortly before midnight to hand her a summons to appear in court on an arson charge.

Three weeks prior to the late-night wake-up call, Cameron had organized and attended an Independence Day burning of the Confederate flag under a park pavilion where barbecuing is not allowed. While a YouTube video later showed her squirting lighter fluid on the large flag, it showed someone else lighting it, and a third man holding the pole as the flag smoldered on a grill.

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Cameron’s attorney, Todd Calvert of Denver, said he indicated to prosecutors that he was prepared to take the case to trial, but it didn’t get that far. Reached by phone today, an El Paso County Court judicial assistant who checked the status of the case said it was dismissed.

“It was a ridiculous charge to begin with and it never should have been filed,” Calvert told The Colorado Independent.

Cameron called her participation in the flag burning an act of protest and free speech.

“There was never a case for arson, and I am profoundly disappointed in the Manitou Springs Police Department for attempting to make it such,” she told The Indy.

A spokesperson for the Manitou Springs Police Department didn’t immediately respond to a voice message.

Photo by Steve Carlin, used with permission.