Statue of Liberty base climber identified

In this image made from video by PIX11, a person, center, leans against the robes of the Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island, as one of the police officers climbed up on a ladder to stand on a ledge nearby talking the climber into descending in New York, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. (PIX11 via AP)

NEW YORK (AP) —A federal official says a woman who climbed the Statue of Liberty's base and spurred the statue's evacuation on July Fourth told police she was protesting the separation of immigrant children from parents who cross the U.S.-Mexico border illegally.

The official identifies the woman as Therese Okoumou. The official wasn't authorized to discuss it and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

A message left at a possible phone number for the woman hasn't been returned.

A group that organized a protest at the statue earlier Wednesday says she took part in unfurling a banner at the statue's pedestal calling for abolishing the federal government's chief immigration enforcement agency. But the group says no one else was aware she would climb the base.

At least six people were arrested in the banner demonstration.


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