A young black woman stood calmly with her feet planted on the ground as two police officers approached her in full riot gear in Baton Rouge, La. Her name is Ieshia Evans and she has become the face of the protest against police brutality in Baton Rouge.
In the photograph, Evans appears graceful and unmoved despite what’s in front of her. Officers arrested 180 protesters in Baton Rouge over the weekend and Evans was one of them. She (and others) blocked the motor way in front of the police department and was told to move out of the street. However, instead of walking away, Evans slowly walked toward the officers prepared to be arrested. She didn’t like the aggressive way that the police were handling the peaceful protesters and decided that she had enough. Some say that Evans was not engaging in peaceful protesting, but in civil disobedience. She non-violently and deliberately disobeyed a law in order to make a statement.
Even as Evans was arrested, she continued to stand her ground. According to photographer, Jonathan Bachman, Evans didn’t resist arrest, she didn’t put up a fight, and there was nothing violent about her removal. Multiple mainstream publications have declared this photo one of the most iconic to come out of this series of protests, and out of the Black Lives Matter movement in general. Here are 5 things you need to know about the woman in this iconic photograph.
1. She is a 28-year-old licensed practical nurse.
2. She is from Brooklyn but resides in Pennsylvania. She traveled to Baton Rouge to protest police brutality after the fatal shooting of Alton Sterling. Saturday, July 9, was her first time protesting.
“She has a son she wants a better future for.” — a statement given by close friend, Natasha Haynes — Nola.com
3. She is mother to a 5 year old son.
4. Her friends and family support her act of bravery.
5. She was held at the police station for 24 hours before she was released on Sunday, July 10.
Many are calling her a “modern day super hero” and “iconic”.