MANHATTAN — A Staten Island activist who touts himself as "The Angry Pacifist" claims a Trinity Church security guard sicced a fake police officer on him who then assaulted the protestor, sending him to the hospital, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in Manhattan Supreme Court.
Richard Lynch, who is active in the Occupy Wall Street movement and has frequently been photographed wearing a Guy Fawkes mask, says he suffered long-term physical and psychological injuries on Oct. 17 last year when he was attacked during a "sleepful protest" on the sidewalk in front of the church.
The activist said that his civil rights were violated when a church guard asked him to leave the public area in front of Trinity during an early morning protest.
When he refused, the security guard called in an unidentified person who Lynch claims was impersonating a police officer who beat him when he refused to comply, according the lawsuit.
Lynch was “slammed (…) into the metal fence outside Trinity Church“ and thrown to the ground before the defendant started “jumping on him and striking [his] ribcage and chest with his elbows,” the complaint states.
Trinity Church representatives were unaware of the attack and the lawsuit. Lynch's lawyer refused to comment. The activist could not be reached.