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WATCH: Abortion doctor arrested after allegedly pulling a gun on pro-life demonstrators outside clinic
Image source: Apologia Studios video screenshot

WATCH: Abortion doctor arrested after allegedly pulling a gun on pro-life demonstrators outside clinic

Protesters initially felt police weren't taking it seriously

UPDATE, 10/18/2019, 4 P.M. CST: Dr. Ronald Yunis has been arrested by Phoenix Police and booked into Maricopa County Jail on aggravated assault charges.

Original story:

An abortion doctor in Phoenix allegedly pulled a gun on pro-life protesters outside a clinic last week, and the protesters are now claiming that police are unwilling to do anything about it.

On Oct. 10, Elvis Kesto was among protesters outside Acacia Women's Center holding a peaceful demonstration. The gathering was one of many in the state organized by End Abortion Now, which is a coalition of churches that advocates for ending abortion through ministry at abortion clinics, publicity, and legislative means.

As Kesto and others were standing outside the clinic, a doctor who is identified in the video as Ronald Yunis drives by in a red Tesla, leaving the facility. As he passes, he holds up an object that appears to be a gun and points it toward Kesto before driving away.

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Kesto reported the incident to Phoenix police the same day. A week later, on Thursday morning, while demonstrating in front of Acacia Women's Center again, Kesto contacted the police again when he saw Yunis arrive in the same red Tesla, asking them to send officers to the scene.

Within the hour, an officer identified as Bobby Madeira arrived at the clinic to speak with Kesto. Madeira and another officer identified as Officer Wilson entered the clinic to speak with Yunis.

After police talked to Yunis, Madeira told Kesto that there was not enough evidence to make an arrest. Madeira said although he viewed the video and still images from the video, he could not "conclusively" say that it was a gun that Yunis was holding. The officer also said Yunis denies that he ever brings a gun to the clinic.

No arrest was made, but Phoenix PD Detective Luis Samudio told Faithwire that detectives are currently investigating the incident, and that it is "not accurate" to say that nothing is being done simply because Yunis was not arrested.

Jeff Durbin, pastor of Apologia Church (the church that established End Abortion Now), told TheBlaze he believed that pro-life demonstrators would have been treated more severely by authorities if they were even legally carrying weapons, let alone if they had pointed one at someone.

"We don't actually carry at the abortion mill, because we don't want any confusion about our purposes there," Durbin said. "If we had been involved in anything like [what Yunis allegedly did], there is absolutely no question I'd be behind bars."

Acacia Women's Center is one of numerous abortion clinics End Abortion Now visits around Arizona regularly. Durbin said right before police arrived Thursday, they had convinced a woman not to go through with her abortion and offered her assistance going forward.

Durbin said Yunis is aware of who they are and sees them on a regular basis, but there has never been any kind of violence or threats between the doctor and protesters on other occasions.

"He isn't nice to us, but I'm not sure if we've ever had any other conflict in the past with him," Durbin said. "This was a shock to us, let's put it that way."

This was the first time the organization has had any meaningful interaction with the Phoenix Police Department regarding demonstrations.

Kesto declined to be interviewed due to the ongoing legal process.

TheBlaze has left multiple messages with the Phoenix Police Department and is awaiting a response, and has submitted a request for the incident report although the department has said delivery of that report could take up to a month.

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