UConn to review security protocols following incident involving conservative speaker

Conservative commentator Lucian Wintrich speaking at the University of Connecticut, moments before a violent incident ended the event, November 28, 2017 (WTNH / JP Coleman)

STORRS, Conn. (WTNH) — The University of Connecticut says the school planned on adding extra security to the Lucian Wintrich speech as soon as organizers notified them of the event last week.

Spokeswoman Stephanie Reitz says there were a large number of uniformed and non-uniformed officers present. She says the school has been having ongoing discussion as to how to best secure events that could turn volatile.

The scene on Tuesday night included a large group of protesters shouting down the White House correspondent for the far-right leaning The Gateway Pundit.

At one point during the speech, a man and woman approached the podium, yelling at Wintrich.

Related Content: Head of CT NAACP on UConn campus after speaker arrested, fight

The woman, identified as Catherine Gregory who works for Quinebaug Valley Community College, then grabbed the hard copy of his speech while security looks on.

Wintrich then chased after the woman, grabbing her from behind in an effort to retrieve what he says was the one hard copy of his speech.

He was arrested and charged with second degree breach of peace.

Related Content: Conservative speaker arrested at UConn blames university security, protesters

Wintrich told News 8 Lead Investigative Reporter George Colli that he asked security several times to remove any protesters that were approaching the podium. The school says it is reviewing the protocols and are hoping to learn from it for any future events.

UConn says the event was open to the general public, so there were not just students at the event.

Reitz also points out that, despite the chaos, there were no reported injuries.

Police are still investigating the matter, including Gregory’s actions.

Original Story: Fight erupts during “It’s OK to Be White” speech at UConn, speaker arrested

A statement from Gregory’s attorney, Jon Schoenhorn read, in part, “Ms Gregory went to UConn for that speech as a private citizen. While she is an employee for QVCC, she did not go there on their behalf as a representative of QVCC.”

Wintrich told News 8 he is considering legal action against the school for lack of security.

WTNH NEWS8 provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Also, you can now block any inappropriate user by simple selecting the drop down menu on the right of any comment and selection "Block User" from there.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s