FORT MYERS, Fla. – Mayor Randy Henderson’s neighbors put up caution tape around their homes and blocked their driveways with trash cans on Friday in preparations for a protest on Saturday.
“This is the start of my 16th year, lived here for 28 years on this street, never had anything like this,” Mayor Henderson said.
Earlier this week, an outspoken member of the Dunbar community took to Facebook calling for the protest because of the recent arrest of Michael McDonald, who claims Fort Myers police officers violated his civil rights by conducting an illegal cavity search.
Police Chief Dennis Eads says no cavity search was conducted, but they did find drugs on McDonald. He’s been arrested 29 times.
“I believe it’s widely felt that I as mayor should bring pressure to bear, if I understand the grievance, on the dismissal of Chief Dennis Eads and other officers that have been involved in some crime fighting.”
Most neighbors, who wanted to remain anonymous, say they don’t agree with the protesters and they’re worried it might affect their day-to-day activities.
“I regret that for them and I apologize for them that they may be interrupted or somehow inconvenienced,” Mayor Henderson said.
Protesters are being offered $8 an hour to show up on Saturday, something that has some city leaders scratching their heads about.
“That’s unusual. I’m a little bothered by the ingenuous nature of that activity. I think that’s wrong.”
Mayor Henderson said his office is always open to discuss any grievances in a professional manner.