A Franklin & Marshall College Kappa Delta sorority sister is one of nine people charged with crimes connected to the riots in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, last weekend. The girl's father on Tuesday blasted a judge's decision to set her bail at $1 million as "obscene" and unconstitutional.
Kathryn Patterson, 20, faces felony and misdemeanor charges including arson, vandalism, riot, and disorderly conduct after her arrest early Monday. She was allegedly a participant in the protests over the fatal police shooting of Ricardo Munoz, who according to bodycam footage chased a police officer with a knife in a threatening manner.
Patterson is a Black Lives Matter supporter, posting on Facebook "BLM, all day every day" and commenting, "my left fist, to symbolize black power."
The girl's father, Chip Patterson of Mercersburg, called the $1 million bail set by the district judge "obscene."
"Everything that I know so far, which is not a lot, indicates that Kat is not guilty of those charges. But then again, we'll have to wait and see," he told the Associated Press.
"I cannot tell you how long this night has been," he said. "I think regardless of what these people did or didn't do, the bail amount is just outrageous and clearly against the Eighth Amendment." The Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits "excessive bail."
Patterson's defenders say she and her friend Taylor Enterline, another individual who was arrested by police, were doing nothing more than acting as "medics" before they were arrested. The social justice advocacy group Lancaster Stands Up characterized the "absurdly high bail amounts" as "a politically motivated attack on the movement for police reform and accountability."
A GoFundMe page set up for Patterson has received support from the Franklin & Marshall College chapter of Delta Kappa, members of the Black Student Union, and as reported by the Washington Free Beacon's Brent Scher, even the college president Barbara Altmann thanked students for creating the GoFundMe, posting on Instagram that "many of us in our community will be contributing."
Last Wednesday, Franklin & Marshall's Kappa Delta sorority features one its sisters in a recruitment post on how KD… https://t.co/HBVljdTx7W— Brent Scher (@Brent Scher)1600274815.0
"Kat was providing medical attention to injured demonstrators and has now been wrongfully accused of crimes she could not possibly commit," the page states. "We as members of the Black Student Union and Kappa Delta Sorority, have created this fund to raise money to support Kat and her family."
The fundraiser has so far raise just over $54,000 toward its goal of $60,000.
An update to the page also urges donors to support the GoFundMe pages for "activists and friends" Enterline and Alexa Wise, a "Black Trans Activist" who was also arrested on charges of arson, riot, and vandalism.