Homeless man attacked by South African Prime Minister’s security at press conference vows to fight charges
A homeless man who was tackled to the ground and arrested in front of the South Australian Prime Minister at a press conference in Adelaide says he feels unfairly targeted by police.
- Aaron John Rudd was arrested at a press conference held by Peter Malinauskas on June 30
- He was handcuffed face down on the pavement by Prime Minister’s Security
- He says he was ‘just curious to watch’
Aaron John Rudd, 54, was arrested in a fight with security at a press conference hosted by Peter Malinauskas on Hutt Street in Adelaide on June 30.
A plainclothes policeman asked him to step back because he was getting too close to the prime minister.
Rudd was then escorted out by Mr. Malinauskas’ security detail and handcuffed face down on the sidewalk in scenes that were caught on camera by the assembled media.
Mr Rudd, who arrived at Adelaide Magistrates’ Court on Friday with a guitar, is charged with disorderly behavior and resisting police.
After his hearing, he told the media that he meant no harm when he walked closer to the press conference to see what was going on.
“I was just passing by and was curious to look, to see what it was all about,” he said.
“I feel like I was unfairly targeted.
“I just think maybe it was the ignorance of the policeman, he should be better trained to be more diplomatic about these situations, that’s not the way to handle a situation like that.
“People like that should be a little more professional, treat the public with a little more dignity and respect.”
Mr Rudd said he was once a full-time carer and had been living on the streets since losing his job and was passionate about advocating for the rights of disadvantaged people.
“I’m very compassionate and very passionate about people on the street,” he said.
“These people have a heart and I care about them, I love being with them.”
Mr Rudd said he did not know who Mr Malinauskas was but felt it was his right to ‘testify’ at the press conference.
He said the police officer and security guards were “aggressively intimidating” towards him and he tried to defend himself.
“I pushed him, I met him with equal resistance. I was not charged with assault because as I told them, it will show in the footage,” Mr Rudd said.
When journalists asked him if he could write a song about what happened, he replied “maybe one day” and that it would be called “freedom for the people, the right to testify”.
The trial was adjourned until October.