IOWA CITY, Iowa — The FedEx deliveryman who stepped in and saved an American flag from burning at a small protest rally in Iowa City has received national attention. FedEx confirmed Saturday morning on Twitter that he will be allowed to keep his job, after thousands of people signed an online petition to make sure he doesn't lose his job over the incident.
A small group of people protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Trump Administration at the pedestrian mall on Thursday, Jan. 26, began to burn American flags. Matt Uhrin, a FedEx driver, stepped in and stole one of the flags, then returned with a fire extinguisher to put out flames on a second flag.
A brief scuffle broke out between Uhrin and the protesters.
In the video, protesters argued that burning the flag is a protected right of the First Amendment, but the group did not have a proper burn permit from the city. Kelli Ebensberger, 21, of Iowa City, and Paul Osgerby, 23, of Ames, were arrested for open burning, which is a simple misdemeanor in Iowa.
FedEx said in a statement to the Iowa City Press Citizen that Uhrin has been interviewed about the incident, and the company is handling the investigation internally.
In the meantime, video of the incident has been shared on Twitter and Facebook, and has been picked up by CNN affiliates.
WQAD has received emails and calls about the incident on both sides of the argument.
People have been showing support for Uhrin on social media with the hashtag #FedExGuy.