911 calls from Hart Bridge protest released


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Several people called 911 the night more than a dozen people stopped traffic on the Hart Bridge, got out of their cars with protest signs and began walking slowly down the bridge.

News4Jax obtained three of those 911 calls.

Operator: "Jacksonville 911"
Caller: "Hi, I'm stuck on the Hart Bridge. There seems to be some sort of protest. People have masks on their faces."
Operator: "Are you northbound or southbound?"
Caller: "I'm on the Hart Bridge heading into downtown. It's really scary."
Operator: "We had them this morning. They're not dangerous in any way. They're usually only there for a second, but we're supposed to send officers."
Caller: "They have traffic totally blocked. They stopped traffic. I have to get somewhere."

LISTEN: Call 1 | Call 2 | Call 3

It was a violation of state law to block the roadway and 19 people were arrested that night.

In the second 911 call, the caller describes what the protesters were doing after they got out of their vehicles.

Operator: "Jacksonville 911"
Caller: "Yes, I'm calling because there's a bunch of protesters who stopped their cars in the middle of the Hart Bridge."
Operator: "Is it both sides or one direction?"
Caller: "It's going toward downtown. They're jumping on top of their cars and everything else."

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said it respects people's right to protest, but a responsibility also exists for other citizens in Jacksonville to make sure they're safe.