Thousands show up at abortion clinic to promote pro-life movement

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Over a thousand people came out to Latrobe Drive for a prayer walk outside of an abortion clinic. That walk was hosted by Love Life Charlotte, a group who aims to end abortions.

Police were on hand to keep everything under control and had to make two arrests .

It's a tale of two sides for a hot button issue, abortion.

"The political climate has escalated what we're seeing from protesters."

Those with LoveLife Charlotte came by the thousands and hosted a prayer walk outside of Charlotte's busiest clinics for women. The groups say they promote life, but add they're anything but protesters.

"We're motivated by love. We're motivated by compassion. We're not argumentative or any of those things," says Justin Reeder, the founder of LoveLife.

The LoveLife group which is backed by the church, claims to put an end to abortions by offering resources for women who are expecting.

Volunteers and those against Love Life made up the other half that stood outside in large numbers. This group says they helped escort women inside the clinic to protect them from feeling shamed.

"They should not have to deal with this so we're here for support in any way we can," says Ann Newing a clinic escort.

They believe Love Life is a group that intimidates and fights against the right of a woman to choose.

"With their presence shaming them and harassing them for making a personal choice, there are stories of what these patients are going through and they have no idea about that it's not even a choice, it's a matter of life and death."

CMPD officers watched both sides, but admit situations like these can turn quickly.

"The rhetoric is more abusive and violent," adds Newing. "There are barriers, there are cones. There are people chanting and walking"

This weekend's prayer walk protest comes on the heels of a federal lawsuit that some protesters filed earlier this month against the city. The lawsuit claims code enforcement workers, who allegedly confiscated signs, violated their right to free speech.

Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved.