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SUV drives across Florida bridge with protester on hood (VIDEO)

Jake Newby
Pensacola News Journal
Winter Haven News Chief

Police are investigating after a protester on the Pensacola Bay Bridge on Saturday was carried across the bridge into Gulf Breeze on the hood of a slow-moving SUV.

Pensacola Police Department Officer Britney Sturgeon confirmed that a man was transported to the hospital by EMS after a vehicle drove past a slowly forming line of protesters that were locking arms to block traffic from both sides of Bayfront Parkway.

Sturgeon said the man "placed himself" on top of the vehicle's hood. She said the man was carried by a silver Ford Flex the entire length of the bridge before the Gulf Breeze Police Department stopped the interaction. She said officers did not observe any apparent injuries to the man.

Florida woman, 80, was sole protestor at event

"A southbound vehicle that was attempting to cross the bridge to go to Gulf Breeze kind of met the protesters at the same time they were forming the line and (the driver) continued as protesters began to surround his vehicle," Sturgeon said. "A gentleman did essentially place himself on top of the hood of the vehicle and remained on the hood of the vehicle as it crossed over to Gulf Breeze."

Pensacola police took over the investigation from the Gulf Breeze police a short time later, and as of about 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Sturgeon said, they are investigating an open "crash report."

No arrests have been made at this time. Sturgeon said the motorist was cooperating and speaking with police Saturday afternoon.

The incident occurred as more than 20 protesters at Graffiti Bridge marched to Bayfront, locked arms and blocked all traffic and all lanes from both sides as they demanded to speak with Mayor Grover Robinson from the middle of the road.

After 20 to 30 of minutes, Robinson came out to talk with the protesters and the situation was resolved a few minutes later.

COURTESY OF LIZ PARKER, PENSACOLA NEWS JOURNAL

This story originally published to pnj.com, and was shared to other Florida newspapers in the USA TODAY Network - Florida.