A woman in an SUV drove on to the State Capitol building's lawn, waving a large "Trump 2020" flag out the window and interrupting a press conference being held in support of under fire DFL state Rep. John Thompson.
Around 11 a.m., witnesses said she drove across the grounds during the press conference, and at one point was doing donuts as law enforcement pursued her vehicle.
In live video from independent photojournalist KingDemetrius Pendleton, the sound of tires screeching can be heard, at which point Thompson — standing behind the speaker — points out toward the lawn and says "Careful," repeatedly.
The camera turns and a tan SUV can be seen driving up the concrete pathways in front of the Capitol steps, flag out the window, as someone goes to confront her. She stops, and Pendleton approaches. The woman honks and pulls her flag away so nobody takes it.
On the back of the SUV is a Trump sticker, an NRA sticker and two stickers stating U.S. President Joe Biden is not her president.
About 3.5 minutes after her SUV approached, a Minnesota State Patrol vehicle shows up. She then drives off, doing circles on the lawn around planted flowers before heading back to the street where she was pulled over by law enforcement. The incident starts at around 14:55 in Pendleton's video below:
Video from Mercado Media showed that, as of 12:30 p.m., the woman was still in her vehicle with Minnesota state troopers surrounding her. Officers can be seen calmly conversing with her as she remained in the driver's seat.
A mental health responder was apparently brought to the scene, speaking with the driver as she smoked a cigarette, and at one point lifting the Trump flag up toward the streamers' cameras. She can also be heard yelling, often incoherently, about political and non-political topics.
At about 12:38 p.m., the woman exited her vehicle and was escorted by state troopers, un-cuffed, to a nearby, unmarked car. A state trooper entered and drove her away.
Activists challenged St. Paul police officers and state troopers at the scene, alleging the response to the woman's actions was too lenient and did not take the safety of the rally attendees seriously enough. They also pointed out the disparity between their response to this incident, and the actions law enforcement officers often take against non-white motorists.
The Minnesota State Patrol is in charge of Capitol security. Bring Me The News has reached out to the agency for more information. A St. Paul Police Department spokesperson told Bring Me The News some of its officers are on scene in a support role.