Experiments with Truth: News

Photo of woman being arrested in Baton Rouge becomes viral symbol

She was the calm at the center of the storm, a storm spreading across the country.

The young woman stood silently on the cracked asphalt, her summer dress billowing in the breeze.

Around her swirled a kinetic mix of police officers and protesters. Dozens of demonstrators had blocked Baton Rouge’s Airline Highway on Saturday to denounce the death four days earlier of Alton Sterling, shot by police outside a convenience store. Many protesters carried signs. Some shouted into bullhorns. A few carried guns.

A phalanx of police officers stepped across the road, dressed in riot gear.

Jonathan Bachman was snapping pictures of protesters yelling at the officers when he turned and saw her.

The woman in the summer dress didn’t seem to look at the two officers as they ran toward her. Instead, she seemed to look beyond them — even as they arrested her.

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