An Interesting Case

Posted by CPMariner , Thu, Dec 21, 2017, 17:14:06 Post Reply Reviews by CPMarinerFirst Amendment Message BoardMain site

I first heard of this on NPR a while back. For those unaware of the circumstances, on inauguration day a band of protesters did "plot" (according to Veritas, some kind of snoop & infiltrate outfit) to wear black, to behave in certain aggravating ways - such as refusing to respond to police if confronted - and so on. Veritas failed to record any evidence of planned violence.

However, violence did occur. Broken shop windows, claims of objects thrown at the police and etc. The facts of the ensuing arrests as presented at trial were that a selected group of over 200 people were cordoned off and arrested en masse.

Of that group, 20 have since pled guilty to various levels of rioting charges, but the rest are defending themselves on assertions that they attempted no property damage or personal injury, and that although they were protesting, they had no part in such crimes. They did not, however, disengage from the group when acts of property damage occurred, and many claim they didn't even know how or by whom such damage was being inflicted.

But the prosecution took an interesting (perhaps novel) position that by merely "being there" and not "disengaging" from the protestors when it seemed apparent that property damage was occurring, the defendants were guilty of some definition of "conspiracy". Or perhaps I misheard or the narrator misspoke, and it was "complicity".

The first "batch" of six defendants was found not guilty.



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