MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Assault and domestic violence charges filed last year against a prominent Memphis activist are dropped, and tonight Frank Gottie is relieved.
The activist who was involved in the I-40 bridge protest last summer was accused of getting into a fight with his ex-girlfriend.
Now, he feels like a heavy weight has been lifted off his shoulders.
"I feel real great, I felt like justice has been served," said Gottie.
Aggravated assault and resisting detention and violating bail charges — all that could have sent him away for a long time, but when his day in court arrived last week, no one showed up to testify. The result: case dismissed.
Gottie says a lot of people judged him because of those charges.
"I lost a lot of support you know, a lot of people lost hope in me because of those charges," said Gottie.
"That's what I meant by bogus because it wasn't supposed to go like that, they knew what they had done, the officers and they could've just apologized for it," said Gottie. "I would've just taken a simple apology for it."
Gottie was under constant supervision, saying he had to wear an ankle bracelet 24/7.
"It stop me from doing a lot of programs and doing a lot candlelights," said Gottie.
"I had to make time in between to do things and participate with the movement and keep pushing so it was kind of hard, but God made a way for it."
Gottie is moving forward and already planning events in the community this fall despite the negativity he says he's seeing on social media.
"Once people saw my charges were dismissed, there were still racist comments coming toward me," said Gottie. "I'm saying just let me breathe, let me live!"
Gottie will be easing back into community activism and says his next event will be a lot less controversial than his last. He's planning a back-to-school bash for the entire city on August 5.