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Four arrested at Iowa protest

Four arrested at Iowa protest

Four people were arrested Saturday during an antigay protest at a Des Moines, Iowa, high school graduation where a gay student was given a scholarship. They were accused of throwing cream pies at the followers of a Kansas-based antigay pastor. Members of the Reverend Fred Phelps's Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan., demonstrated at Lincoln High School's graduation at Veterans Memorial Auditorium. The church members were protesting because senior class president Julius Carter was awarded a college scholarship in Matthew Shepard's name. The First Friday Breakfast Club, an Iowa association of gay men, conducted a counterprotest. Police major Russell Underwood said officers were on hand for both groups' safety. "It's a shame the pies had to be thrown," Underwood said. "I thought we would get by with no arrests. Barricades separated Phelps's followers and the counterprotesters. Shortly before the graduation ceremony began, four people dressed in black approached Phelps's group and threw pies at them. Police charged Timothy Bossenberg, 22, no address available; Sean Glynn, 20, of Des Moines; Kristen Chilcoat, 19, of Des Moines; and Lacey Hanson, 19, of Altoona, with disorderly conduct. Lincoln High students helping with the commencement ceremony said the controversy about the senior class president has made the school stronger. "I think it's made more people have Lincoln pride, and it's unified our school," said Jessica Reese, a junior at Lincoln.

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