People protesting with signs on the sidewalk in front of Cache Restaurant last night, where Republican presidential hopeful Sen. Ted Cruz was dining, say Cache owner Payne Harding emptied a champagne bucket of water on them from the second floor balcony of the restaurant.
Robert Nunn, Jennifer Pierce and James Ryan Bozeman were at the corner of President Clinton Avenue and River Market Avenue about 9:35 p.m. holding signs saying “Now Go Away” and other anti-Republican slogans when they were doused. Apparently, Bozeman was in the direct line of fire; he filed a report at the substation in the River Market (the police, however, cannot find the report, though they have an incident number provided by 911). Nunn was not hit, a good thing since he wears hearing aids that would have shorted out from water. Pierce was splashed.
We attempted to contact Harding, but have not heard back. Harding has issued a statement of apology:
“On behalf of myself, Cache Restaurant and my family I would like to issue my sincerest of apologies to James Ryan Bozeman along with every individual affected by the events that took place last evening. This was a heat of the moment action driven by frustration; these actions were in no way shape or form politically motivated. Customers were having difficulty entering and exiting the restaurant and I thought it was causing a problem for my business. I did not know who the protesters were or what they were protesting. It was as simple as a poor decision that, given the opportunity to make again, I would obviously think about the consequences before I acted. Cache is, and will always be, an establishment that welcomes everyone. There is no excuse for my actions, and I sincerely apologize.”
The protesters had hoped to see Cruz when he came out the front door,but he left by the back, apparently. Gov. Asa Hutchinson, however, came out the front door and waved to the protesters.
Nunn said one of their main objections to Cruz is his Dominion Theology that would cast the United States as a Christian nation governed by Biblical law, as interpreted on the right.