MELBOURNE, FL – Two violations of the federal FACE law occurred today against Joel (Pat) Pinkston and Marie O’Rourke, who are both FACE-protected pro-life referral counselors.
Joel (Pat) Pinkston’s account
On the morning of December 15, 1999, Joel (Pat) Pinkston, a FACE-protected pro-life referral counselor, was providing referral services on public property (Brevard County Fire Dept.) just east of Suntree Plaza (home of WomanCare abortion clinic). This property is also freely used for parking by patrons and workers from Suntree Plaza. One of the plaza’s dumpsters is also located on this fire department property.
About 9:45 a.m., Deputy Jeff Bernard and Lt. Phil Pantaleo approached Pat and said he was trespassing on Fire Department property. Pat told them what he was doing and pointed to all the cars from the plaza that were parked on the same property. That didn’t matter, they said. They issued him a trespass warning anyway, threatening him with arrest if he did not leave immediately and warning him that he would be immediately arrested if he returned to that property. Pat then left and immediately reported this violation to Louis Freeh, Director of the FBI.
Marie O’Rourke’s account
A little while later on the same morning, Marie O’Rourke, another FACE-protected pro-life referral counselor, was providing referral services at the south entrance (from St. Andrews Blvd.) to Suntree Plaza (home of WomanCare abortion clinic) where counselors have been operating since August 1999.
This time, Deputy Jeff Bernard and Commander Joe Crosby approached Marie and told her she was trespassing and that she had to be on the sidewalk out on Wickham Rd. They then issued her a trespass warning and threatened to arrest her if she did not leave immediately and that she would be immediately arrested if she came back to that area again. Marie then left and immediately reported this violation to Louis Freeh, Director of the FBI.