FLINT, Mich. -- Several people from Northeast Ohio were hurt when a pickup truck hit a group of demonstrators in Michigan. They were part of a group called “Fight for 15," promoting a $15 minimum wage nationwide.
A fellow protester recorded the scene; soon after, eight people were struck by the pickup truck during a predawn demonstration in Flint, Michigan, Tuesday morning.
The group, which included Ohio union workers from SEIU 1199, were rallying to support a $15 an hour minimum wage in Michigan and across the nation.
"That's when the car came from the other, opposite side of the street from where the union hall was, across the street from the union hall and slammed and hit multiple people," said incoming Ohio State Representative Juanita Brent by phone.
Brent, who is a Democrat and unopposed in the November election, was part of the march. She says four of the injured were from Northeast Ohio and all suffered minor injuries.
"Everybody is gonna be okay. One person we were told had a broken rib bone or something like that, but thank God they were all okay, because they were hit by a truck," she said.
Flint police say the crash appears to be an accident. The chief says some of the marchers were crossing a busy highway to attend a rally at a nearby McDonald's when the pickup driver struck them. Police say there was no police escort because officers were not made aware of the march ahead of time.
"The first thing everybody wanted to do, which we did, was pray; we prayed for those who were hurt; we prayed that everybody stayed encouraged," said Brent.
Juanita Brent says the group stayed determined. They attended another demonstration in Detroit before heading home to Ohio.
"We know that it's bigger than that situation that was at hand, that we had to continue going on with the rest of the day," she said.
Meanwhile, she feels encouraged by Amazon's plan to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour. The company's newest North Randall fulfillment center is District 12.
"That's letting people know that they're actually hearing what we are saying," Brent said.
Flint police say the pickup truck driver was shaken and in tears after the accident. They say he did not have any alcohol or drugs in his system.