Tempers flare during Zoom meeting addressing 'vigilante' group in Fishtown

A Zoom meeting to address the fallout over a group of men armed with bats and other weapons in Fishtown last month quickly became heated. Philadelphia police held the meeting Tuesday night for people in the community.

“Do Black lives matter?" asked Brendan Lowry.

“Of course they do. Black lives matter. White lives matter, Hispanic lives matter, Asian lives matter, Native American lives matter,” Captain Bill Fisher said.

“Thank you for saying all lives matter after saying Black lives matter. Do you not understand the issue with that?” replied Lowry. 

The meeting was meant to address concerns over vigilante behavior in the Fishtown neighborhood on June 1st, where a group made up of, mostly, white men were carrying bats and, in their words, protecting their neighborhood.

Jeannine A. Cook is the owner of Harriet’s Bookshop in Fishtown. She protested the meeting.

“I’ve taken a stand. My protest is that I will not attend any events with police officers. I’m standing on that. That is my protest because no work has been done, there’s nothing to talk about,” Cook explained.

Those unhappy with how the police failed to disband the group of vigilantes after curfew say they were given preferential treatment by the cops.

Captain Bill Fisher disagreed. He said officers were outnumbered and unable to effectively enforce curfew.

“If we would’ve started rounding people up and bringing them in for curfew, we would’ve had no cops out on that street and all hell would have broken loose,” Captain Fisher remarked.



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