A video of an Antifa protester kicking a canister of tear gas at a police officer and then proceeding to get hit in the groin with a rubber bullet, went viral earlier this week. Well it turns out that things have gotten even worse for the viral video sensation. He was arrested on Thursday evening.
The protester identified himself as 29-year-old Joshua Stuart Cobin from Scotsdale, AZ, who works at Go Daddy. He was wearing a black mask in the video, although AZ Central is reporting that a Reddit user claiming to be Cobin is saying that he wasn’t a part of Antifa. Ironically, that same user also stated that he didn’t think he would be arrested for his actions because “if they wanted to arrest me I feel like they would have done so already.”
Cobin doesn’t think he did anything wrong (H/T: CBS 5):
“I don’t equate kicking or putting back tear gas canisters as attacking police. I never attacked a police officer,” he said.
He said he kicked the canister because he felt officers were not justified in their response to Tuesday’s protests. Phoenix police have said they broke up the demonstration with tear gas and pepper balls after some people in the crowd threw rocks, bottles and other objects at them.
“That was not an unlawful assembly and that I had every right to be there. And that tear gas was in the way of myself and every other peacefully assembled protesters being there,” he said.
However, Sgt. Jonathan Howard of the Phoenix police announced that Cobin “has posted images and admissions to his crime on social and local media outlets.” Cobin was arrested on charges of aggravated assault against a police officer and unlawful assembly. Five others involved in the protest were also arrested.
Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams told The Arizona Republic that the police did issue a warning to protesters before using their crowd-control gear. The police began using their gear after an object was thrown at them.
Cobin went to the emergency room on Tuesday evening to get treated “for inhaling pepper spray and for second-degree burns on his right hand from picking up a hot can of tear gas,” per CBS 5.
The video of Cobin getting hit in the groin has gone viral to the point where several hilarious versions were made of it, including one with the never-gets-old Titanic song mixed in.