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Woman accused of pushing demonstrator accuses Tampa police of pushing her

She was taken to the hospital after she complained of pain, authorities said.

TAMPA, Fla. — Editor's Note: The video above contains strong language. Viewer discretion is advised.

UPDATE (Sept. 4, 2020): Jamela "Jae" Passmore will not be prosecuted. State Attorney Andrew Warren's Office released the following statement on the matter:

"Our office will not be pursuing criminal charges related to an incident on August 12 where it is alleged that suspect Jae Passmore committed battery when she lightly pushed a man who walked closely by her. Consistent with other similar cases, we are exercising our discretion not to expend limited resources prosecuting an extremely minor incident that presents in no threat to public safety."

Previous story:

A woman is facing battery and resisting arrest charges after police say she pushed a man during a demonstration in downtown Tampa. Then, a video shows her accuse police of pushing her, too.

On Aug. 12, people gathered for the "Tampa's People Protest" around 7 p.m. on the steps of City Hall. About 40 people were there. 

At the same time, a "Back the Blue" group of demonstrators gathered on Franklin Street near Tampa Police headquarters. About 20 people were there.

At one point, the two groups met and chanted and shouted at one another. Video from police shows the Tampa's People Protest group walking toward police headquarters as the Back the Blue group walks in front of them on Franklin Street.

The video shows a man wearing a black shirt and an American flag face mask step in front of a woman with an orange-colored shirt. The video shows the woman then appear to push the man on his right shoulder.

Police said the man and a witness contacted officers, who later found and made contact with the woman, identified by officers as Jamela Passmore.

The Tampa Bay Times on Thursday described Passmore, who goes by Jae, as a prominent Black Lives Matter activist in the Tampa Bay area.

Body cam video shows officers approach Passmore near Kennedy Boulevard and attempt to take her into custody. Police said she pulled away from officers and then fell to the ground.

In the video, however, Passmore said "you pushed me" to an officer.

The body cam video shows other people around Passmore screaming at officers and saying she had been injured at a previous protest. 

Tampa Fire Rescue crews arrived and took Passmore to St. Joseph's Hospital after she complained of hip pain.

Police said she's been given a notice to appear in court for charges of battery and resisting arrest without violence.

Passmore's attorney Gretchen Cothron told the Tampa Bay Times she was reviewing evidence in the case and described officers' treatment of the activist as "completely unacceptable."

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