Mass anti-lockdown protests like those recently seen in state capitals of Michigan and Pennsylvania have come to Idaho, after a mother was filmed being arrested by police for allowing her children to play at a playground closed by coronavirus 'stay at home' orders.
The incident happened in the city of Meridian, which like most other places across the nation closed down its public parks and recreational facilities for use. It immediately sparked a protest of about 100 people in front of Meridian City Hall in Idaho's third largest city.
40-year old Sara Brady had reportedly been at the playground with a small group of others as part of a 'playdate protest' against the park closure, which they slammed as local government overreach against freedoms of people in the community.
Police said they asked Brady to leave multiple times, while she's seen in the now viral video asking why the officers don't have masks on.
"Arrest me for being difficult. Do it! Record it!," she was heard saying.
Police say that when they showed up they saw that caution tape and metal signs prohibiting the play area's use had been removed, and they "observed numerous individuals gathered on the closed playground area."
"Meridian officers made several attempts to help Brady adhere to the rules," police said in a statement. "She was non-compliant and forced officers to place her under arrest to resolve the issue. She was arrested for trespassing." She had argued to officers: "But we're not trespassing!" - seen in the video.
A follow-up video with her in handcuffs being escorted out of the park further showed moms holding babies attempting to block the officers' paths. "Move out of my way," one officer tells a mother with her infant.
A woman was heard saying as Brady was taken out of the park area: "Her kids are here! Her kids are here? What is going to happen? Who's got her kids?"
The city and county reportedly posted that all playground structures were "closed" last month over concerns that coronavirus can live on plastic and other surfaces up to two or three days.
CBS affiliate KBOI-TV reported that Brady was charged by police with one count of misdemeanor trespassing.
This is likely to spark further backlash from locals who don't want to adhere to 'closure' orders in public park spaces, given it's their tax dollars that pay for such things as playground structures in the first place.
Idaho is an example of a state which hasn't witnessed a significant outbreak, with over 1,766 COVID-19 cases as of Wednesday, including 51 deaths, out of a population of approaching two million people.
Many Americans in the central and southern states have begun to question whether the fate of their states and local communities should be dictated by the more dire circumstances of large cities on the East and West coasts - where case numbers have been soaring.