U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark appeared in public just a few hours after her child stood in court on a charge of assaulting a cop, and looked to pivot to anything else.
Asked whether Clark condemned violence against cops, the number two Democrat in the U.S. House of Representatives said, “I condemn violence against everyone, whether that is against police or against community members as a result of any person or government entity.”
Her 23-year-old daughter Riley Dowell, identified in court documents by her given name, Jared, is charged with assault and battery on a police officer, tagging property, vandalism of a historical marker and resisting arrest.
She’s accused of hitting a Boston cop during a melee that followed an attempt to arrest her for spraying anti-police slogans on the bandstand in Boston Common.
The daughter of Clark, the Democratic Whip, pleaded not guilty and was quickly sprung on $500 bail.
“I am going to refer to my statements that I’ve already released on this,” Clark said. She added that “I love all my children and Riley dearly. But this is a difficult time in that cycle of joy and pain of being a parent. I have full trust in the legal system. This case is before it, and I have confidence that there will be an equitable and fair outcome.”
Clark, of Revere, was appearing alongside state and local officials in Watertown to announce a sizable federal grant she’d secured for environmental efforts in her district, including for “tree trenches.”
“Thank you all for coming to Watertown City Hall,” state Rep. Steve Owens, facing a horde of press waiting to speak to Clark, deadpanned as he kicked off the press conference. He further marveled at “so much interest in Watertown’s plans.”
Alas, tree trenches were not what led reporters to the western suburb. Clark parried several questions about the charges by referring back to her previous statements and looked to turn to other topics including the environment, police funding and wages for working mothers.
Last summer, Clark was among a group of Democratic lawmakers who were arrested outside the Supreme Court by Capitol Police after an abortion protest. “That’s what we call good trouble,” Clark’s office then tweeted in a reference to the famous quote from civil-rights icon and late U.S. Rep. John Lewis.
Asked whether this is another example of “good trouble,” Clark again said she’s referring back to previous statements, and then pivoted: “Going back to the priority of making sure that we are working towards safer communities — that has been certainly the goal not only of mine personally, but the Democratic caucus.”
She then continued on to talk about the environment, jobs, infrastructure and gun violence.
Any message for cops?
“It has been my work and my position and priority that every single person in every single zip code has an assumption of safety in their communities,” she said. “And that is the work that I’ve done. And police are critical partners in that work going forward.”
Originally published at www.bostonherald.com