SAN FRANCISCO—On Wednesday, August 10, a pro-Roe v. Wade advocate announced she is filing a civil rights lawsuit against the San Francisco Fire and Police Departments for allegedly injecting her with a substance against her will at a demonstration she was attending.   

On June 13, Kareim McKnight and her friend, Amanda Piasecki, were at Game 5 of the Warriors series against the Boston Celtics at Chase Center when they walked onto the main floor with a sign that read, “Overturn Roe? Hell No!” 

At some point, the two demonstrators were dragged off the stage by their feet out of the venue. 

The plaintiff claims that once they were outside officials threatened to sedate her. She was strapped to a gurney and wheeled towards an emergency vehicle. According to McKnight, the paramedic driving the vehicle did not ask her any medical questions and did not inform her what she was going to be injected with. 

After she was injected, she began to slur her words and started to feel dizzy. She was taken to a hospital and staff at that hospital supplied her with a document informing her of what she was injected with earlier. According to the report, the substance was 5 milligrams of a drug called Versed, a sedative often prescribed to reduce anxiety. The suit also described how she was in a distressed emotional state after having an altercation with the police. McKnight asserted that she was not under any emotional distress during her altercation with authorities.

McKnight recalls, “While I was on the ground, handcuffed in front of the emergency vehicle, one of the firefighters came with a needle towards me and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing and I flinched and I said, ‘No!’ what if I’m allergic, you can’t just inject me,'” she said. Her lawyer argues that the fire and police department violated McKnight’s Fourth Amendment which gives her a right to control her own body. 

There are instances where the police department allows for the use of the drug midazolam, a short-acting sedative sold under the brand name Versed, to be used on civilians. In cases where someone is severely agitated and poses a danger to themselves or others the drug can be administered under the direction of a police official.