A Black woman who was arrested for climbing the statue of Liberty has been found guilty in court.
Therese "Patricia" Okoumou climbed the base of the Statue of Liberty in July to protest President Donald Trump's immigration policies. She was found guilty on Monday of three misdemeanor counts of trespassing, interference with government agency functions and disorderly conduct.
Okoumou had pleaded not guilty. At the time, Okoumou had climbed the statue and refused to come back down which forced authorities to shut down and evacuate popular tourist location, Liberty Island.
According to WABC, the prosecutor argued that Okoumou endangered herself, rescuers and thousands of Liberty Island visitors while a police officer also testified that Okoumou threatened to push over a ladder if the officer got any closer.
Okoumou said she was moved by the sight of "children in cages" and wanted to bring a spotlight to the issue.
"Instead of treating them with kindness, what we've shown them is cages," she said after court. "So if I go in the cage with them, I am on the right side of history. I do not regret my actions on the Fourth of July."
Okoumou faces up to 18 months in federal prison and will be sentenced on March 5.
"Therese Okoumou was convicted in federal court today for a dangerous stunt last July 4th that endangered herself and the NYPD and U.S. Park Police officers who rescued and apprehended her," U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said in a statement.
"The act of climbing the base of the Statue of Liberty went well beyond peaceable protest, a right we certainly respect. It was a crime that put people at grave risk. We commend Judge (Gabriel) Gorenstein's decision to hold Therese Okoumou accountable for her dangerous and reckless conduct."
"The result today was not surprising, but sometimes you have to stand on principle," said Michael Avenatti, Okoumou's lawyer. "And history will be incredibly kind to Patricia."