A protest in Seattle turned violent after a man drove into a crowd and shot a 27-year-old Black demonstrator in the arm. Social media posts that were shared of the incident paint the victim, Daniel “Dan” Gregory, as a hero who put himself in harm’s way to protect hundreds of other protesters from being hit.
According to the Seattle Times, the incident occurred around 8:30 p.m. on Sunday at an intersection that for days had been occupied by protesters denouncing police brutality. The shooting happened after the driver, identified on Twitter as Nikolas Fernandez, plowed through a crowd of protesters, rattling those on the street.
Recalling the event, Gregory, a frequent BLM protester according to reports, said “I see a car run down Pine. I catch him and I punch him in the face. I hear the gunshot go off in my arm and I move right in time when he reaches for something.” The Seattle Times reports that Gregory was treated by medics on the ground before being taken to Harborview Medical Center, where he was listed in stable condition. He is said to be doing okay, though his brother posted on Instagram that he would require surgery.
The driver who shot Gregory exited his vehicle after firing his gun and turned himself into police officers who were on the scene. Twitter sleuths obtained his arrest record, which shows he was booked at King County Correctional Facility in Seattle at around 12:22 a.m. It also shows that he was arrested for an assault and his bail was denied.
A GoFundMe has been set up on Gregory’s behalf by Black Lives Matter Seattle Original to cover his medical bills, and has already surpassed its goal of $100,000. Any additional funds will go to Gregory’s well-being.
“My whole thing was to protect those people,” Gregory said as medics ushered him away from the scene of his shooting. “My whole thing was to protect those people down there.”