Gun rights supporter rebukes protesters for 'riot' at Ohio University
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Conservative media personality and gun rights advocate Kaitlin Bennett accused "leftists" of starting a "riot" when she showed up at Ohio University this week.

Videos shared on social media showed protesters surrounding the gun rights supporter and Kent State graduate when she visited the campus in Athens, Ohio, on Monday.

“This is what happens when a Trump supporter goes to a college campus. Leftists at @ohiou started a riot when @Joelpatrick1776 and I showed up, and the @oupolice let it happen,” Bennett tweeted Tuesday.

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“I think @realDonaldTrump should strip funding from universities like this that harbor terrorists,” she added.

Bennet, known on social media as the Kent State "gun girl," said she was at the Ohio University campus to ask Presidents Day “trivia questions.”

Bennett included a 58-second-long clip of her time on campus, showing people crowding around the car she was in. At one point, someone tosses liquid from a bottle towards the car that has its window rolled down.

Joel Patrick, a 24-year-old social media personality and radio host, was in the driver’s seat as drinks were tossed through the window. 

“People were telling me I wasn’t black and that I needed to be blacker,” Patrick told The Washington Post. “It was just such a weird experience.”

“What we need more of in America is for people to have a conversation from two sides of the aisle without resorting to violence or bullying,” he added.

Ohio University Police said in a statement it was aware of the situation, which it said “did not rise to the level of a riot.”

The police department added that it received no prior notice of “the activists’ plans.”

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“Although such notice is not required, the lack of it deprived the department of the ability to plan staffing levels. As a result, the officers on duty had to prioritize their response to the event as they unfolded, rightly putting everyone’s personal safety ahead of all other concerns,” police said. 

Bennett said in a subsequent tweet she will “absolutely be returning” to the campus, and said “next time I’ll bring an army of gun owners for an open carry walk through campus.”

In a statement Tuesday, the university said "both" groups "expressing varying viewpoints on an issue" were within their rights. 

"We take concerns about complex situations like this seriously, and first and foremost, our focus is always the safety of our students, our University community, and visitors to our campuses. Our University believes that diversity of viewpoint promotes its educational goals," the university said.

"We are a public institution and we take that responsibility very seriously by respecting the rights of all persons to express themselves in a lawful manner. To that end, we welcome lawful expression of differing viewpoints in appropriate forums throughout our campuses," it added. 

Bennett, who graduated from Kent State in 2018, has been advocating for students to be able to carry guns on college campuses. 

When she graduated she shared a photo of herself carrying a gun on campus, showing her graduation cap decorated with a gun and the phrase “come and take it.”

Ohio law allows open carry of firearms in public areas, but it is against the Ohio University student code of conduct to posses a weapon, which limits students from carrying guns on school grounds.