Councilwoman Inna Vernikov, a member of the Republican party in Brooklyn, was taken into custody on Friday after being seen carrying a gun at a rally supporting Palestine on Thursday. This incident has led to demands for her immediate removal from office.
During the Thursday afternoon protest at CUNY’s Brooklyn College, a councilwoman who is Jewish and has previously spoken out against supporters of the pro-Palestinian movement was present. The demonstrators had gathered on campus, and the councilwoman was in attendance.
According to sources from the police department, during the protest that took place on Thursday between noon and 2:45 p.m., Vernikov, who is 39 years old, was spotted with the “butt-end of a firearm” sticking out from the front portion of her pants.
At around 3 a.m. on Friday, accompanied by her lawyer, she surrendered herself to the 70th Precinct.
According to sources, she was asked to turn in her gun and firearm permit and was given a desk appearance ticket instead of being processed.
During the rally held on the campus of Brooklyn College, the SJP chapter students were leading the way. However, Inna Vernikov made an appearance with a gun, which she showed off to the Palestinian students and their supporters. This kind of behavior is often used by Zionist groups to suppress any kind of solidarity shown towards Palestine. The use of force and intimidation tactics is not acceptable and must be condemned.
According to sources from the police department, during the previous protest, there were no reports of anyone being threatened or harmed due to the possession of the firearm by the individual in question.
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Vernikov may have a concealed carry permit, as reported in this article, but it is important to note that carrying a firearm at sensitive locations like protests or school grounds is illegal in New York state.
According to sources from the police, The Post reported that the councilwoman was charged with a Class E felony on Friday. This felony has a potential sentence of two to five years in prison.
On Friday, Adrienne E. Adams, the New York City Council Speaker, emphasized the importance of elected officials abiding by the law and setting an example for all New Yorkers. Bringing firearms to rallies or protests is not only unlawful but also unacceptable for civilians. Adams made it clear that such behavior should not be tolerated.
The Council acknowledges that enforcing the law in this criminal matter falls under the jurisdiction of the NYPD and the Brooklyn District Attorney. Therefore, their responsibility is to ensure that justice is served. The Council is currently conducting an inquiry into the possible consequences of Council Member Vernikov’s behavior and the outcome of the legal proceedings on her continued participation in the body. We will respect the legal process and await its conclusion.
Unfortunately, The Post’s request for comment from Vernikov did not receive an immediate response.
On Thursday afternoon, the councilwoman posted a video of herself addressing the controversial protest. She spoke passionately about the situation and made her voice heard in a public forum. Her actions demonstrate her commitment to engaging with the community and taking a stance on important issues.
Although Vernikov’s firearm was not visible in her own video, images and footage of her with the gun prominently displayed in her pants circulated rapidly on social media.
CUNY4Palestine tweeted about the rally held on Brooklyn College campus, which was led by students from their SJP chapter. The tweet included images of Inna Vernikov displaying a gun to Palestinian students and their supporters.
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“The tactics employed by Zionist groups to suppress any support for Palestine involve the use of force and intimidation,” stated the speaker.
As one of the attendees expressed, “She ought to be dismissed from her job and have her license to carry a gun revoked.”
I attended a rally this afternoon at Brooklyn College with CM Farah Louis and Kalman Yeger. However, it was disheartening to witness some protestors shouting insensitive and violent slogans such as “GLOBALIZE THE INTIFADA” and “FROM THE RIVER TO THE SEA, PALESTINE WILL BE FREE”, while innocent women and babies are being subjected to heinous acts such as rape, massacre, and beheading. This behavior is unacceptable and does not promote peace and understanding.
Another person added their own perspective, declaring, “He is a threat to our society and should be treated as such.” As the conversation continued, a third person joined in, stating firmly, “This is a domestic terrorist.” It was clear that there was a shared sentiment among the group that the individual in question posed a significant danger to the community.