Police arrest 3 after protest at Merrimack offices of Israel-based defense company
Three people have been arrested and are being held without bail in connection with a protest Monday morning at the Merrimack offices of an Israel-based defense company.
Merrimack Police said the demonstration left the Elbit Systems building defaced with spray paint, broken windows and other damage, and that an “incendiary device” was found on the roof of the building.
Police said they received calls from employees shortly before 8 a.m., “reporting protestors blocking the driveway and multiple people believed to be on the roof.”
“Upon arrival, officers encountered a number of protestors blocking the driveway voicing support for Palestine,” police said in a press release issued Monday afternoon. “They eventually vacated the roadway and allowed responding officers to access the property.”
Police said they found three people on the roof of the building: Calla Mairead Walsh, age 19, from Cambridge, Mass.; Sophie Marika Ross, age 22, from Housatonic, Mass.; and Bridget Irene Shergalis, age 27, from Dayville, Conn. Police also said they found an incendiary device on the roof, “similar to ones later located on one of the suspects.”
A photo posted to social media Monday morning shows people standing in a driveway, with a line of cars backed up, holding a banner that says, in part, “SHUT ELBIT DOWN.” Other posts show messages including “GENOCIDE PROFITEERS” spray painted on the building, and devices creating billowing clouds of smoke.
Authorities said the three people arrested are being held on preventative detention and are scheduled to be arraigned in Hillsborough County Superior Court South on Tuesday.
Police have also been called in to respond to recent protests at Elbit Systems offices in Cambridge, Mass., according to the Boston Globe.
Merrimack Police said they are continuing to investigate, with support from the FBI, and are "working toward identifying any and all coconspirators."