There are only a few that truly understand the duty of our stand as activists as 3-fold. Patti Beers has been diligent in jail solidarity, being present in court for the arrested, and now Leone Hankey who has been emailing her "general court support" to occupiers online. Scroll down for a complete list of the names and court appearances scheduled for our Occu-jailed of Occupy Los Angeles. These comrades are not to be left alone in their trials. If we don't support the occu-jailed, we are as guilty as corporate America in their disregard for our many physically and psychologically disabled war veterans now left homeless and alone. The duty of our Revolutionary stand is 3-fold. We are a peaceful movement. We protest first with civil disobedience, we accept arrests as our 2nd duty if possible, and 3rd, we stand together in jail solidarity.
jail solidarity - unity of purpose of those incarcerated or imprisoned. In some mass arrest situations, the activists decide to use solidarity tactics to secure the same plea bargain for everyone. Sometimes activists also make a mutual decision to reject offered plea bargains and take their cases to trial in order to overburden the court system, or in order to otherwise mutually support one another as co-defendants; an example of this would be the Camden 28. It is generally agreed that jail solidarity works best when a plan is arranged ahead of time.
I remember the preparations for the raid of Occupy Los Angeles. I'm pretty sure it was Ruth moderating this particular night. Solidarity Park was packed in the days before the eviction and on that night, it took me 20 minutes to get from the South Steps to my tent, which was just off the corner across from the occupied land then declared Sovereign Nation. There was a total of 298 peaceful protesters arrested on N30, and even more in the days gone by, since the raid.
"THOSE OF US THAT CAN AFFORD TO BE ARRESTED ... AND ARE WILLING TO BE ARRESTED, PLEASE MOVE TO THE LEFT (WEST) SIDE OF THE RAILS!"
There was the speaker's pause... amongst us, chins raised and eyes lowered. We were on our beloved porch steps at Camp Ola, it was the last days of Occupy Los Angeles Phase 1. My nephew Shannon would step up and be counted, but like his father, he is haunted by the best of luck.
Solidarity Park, November 30, 2011
There were the smallest girls whose courage flared from stoic faces. Old-aged men. Soccer mom women and of course, of course, our men who would be peaceful, but I can see anger and determination and that thing men do, heroics. I see them all heroes bathed in a distinct hue of amber for some reason...gold light. ...beautiful, and truly divine to witness.
"THOSE WHO DO NOT WISH TO BE ARRESTED AT THIS TIME... OR CANNOT AFFORD TO BE ARRESTED PLEASE MOVE TO THIS SIDE OF THE STEPS!"
That huge crowd sliced right down the middle, then broke away and into smaller groups of around 15 to 20 people each, and we huddled together and moderated informally, discussing everything we could possibly think of. And in that magic of the decentralized movement we had aced by then, we covered every possible hypothetical occurrance that might be considered an important precautionary awareness that everyone needed to know. When returning to GA after 15 minutes, we announced that the many pets that also lived with us, our occudogs and occucats needed to be tagged or taken out of the camp to safety, beforehand. We imprinted the importance of watching after the weak or elderly, or those not activists but the homeless that came to us for warmth, the campers that may become confused or panicked. during the coming raid.
For reasons I'd be silly to publish, I stayed on the sidelines, and worked as a runner in OLA Media on raid night. My job was to collect media content from the citizen journalists that would risk arrrest. In thier last moments before arrest, they were to hand over their cameras, flipcams or cellphone to the runners assigned to them who could slip through lines and run the data back to media for immediate uploading. This was an important move because "the whole world is watching", but the world could only get the real images through us, and not through the modified reports edited by the mainstream media.
As a runner, I had my mountain bike, and I remember the very moment I left Camp OLA. I knew it was the last time I would ever physically be free in Solidarity Park, and I took a jump up and off the curb with my bike while actually hearing my own voice whisper, "...bye-bye Camp OLA!". And from that moment to this moment today, I fight back tears for my unforgettable life there, admiring my brave friends, and my new family of true revolutionaries, especially those that stayed on the land we occupied to make the stand, to make OUR point. Part of me saw them as larger than history. Another part of me stood firm in my personal truth. That is, I cannot withstand it, I do not have the psychological strength in composure, no capacity to be "okay" locked up inside a cage to be taunted and mindfuc*ed by the insane deputy sherriffs. I knew it without question, since it was not my first barbecue.
|“||Patrick O'Neill had broken a conditional sentence that he had had from a previous action. His bail was set at ten thousand dollars. "As soon as the judge reduced the bail for me, representatives of the court came to my cell. They wanted me to sign a paper that promised that I would appear at the trial. I refused because they would not release Patrick. Some people thought it was strange that I voluntarily remained in jail. But prison solidarity increases the moral pressure on the authorities. After two months they removed Patrick's bail requirement and we could leave the jail together.|
So far, hundreds of Occupy Los Angeles participants have been arrested. Many of these peaceful people will be in court and they need your support.
We need as many court observers as possible. Some of the cases have been dropped completely or dismissed by the judge for lack of evidence. Some peaceful protesters are still awaiting arraignment. Some are waiting to hear about charges.
However, some of the cases have already begun jury selection and opening arguments in criminal trials and will proceed. Unfortunately, some of our occupiers have been found guilty and face sentencing.
We need people who are willing to sit, quietly and professionally, in the courtrooms to observe and take note of what happens.
In the courtroom: Fill the courtroom with supporters…
• Be respectful. It is often hard to sit and watch injustices unfold in front of you, but interruptions in the courtroom can cause a judge to take his anger out on the defendant or have you removed from the room. It’s best to be quiet and listen to the proceedings without comment, so the defendant feels supported but not fearful the judge will be angry.
• Dress for court. Dress like it is YOU who is on the stand. As supporters in the courtroom, your appearance reflects on the defendant. Participants can dress in the same shirt or the same color or wear a matching ribbon to show their solidarity and unity among our community.
• Note taking: Please take good notes if you can. Taking notes of important details can help those who cannot attend court to understand what is happening inside. Since cameras are not allowed inside these trials and hearings, your notes may be the only information to get out to supporters. If you take notes at an Occupy LA court appearance, please send them to HYPERLINK "mailto:.
OUTSIDE OF THE COURTROOM
CAUTION: Be aware of laws concerning jury tampering. Do not hand out information about the defendant, the case, or jury nullification once jury selection begins or during the trial.
- Emotional Support The criminal (in)justice system is designed to isolate and disempower people. Going through the legal system can be both financially and emotionally draining. Awaiting a trial can be a lonely and frustrating experience. If we are to build a strong, vibrant movement, we must make sure we do not let anyone slip through the cracks.
- You may want to talk to the defendants and their lawyers to make sure they are behind your court support plan 100%. Some defendants may not want a lot of media hype around their case for a variety of reasons like fear of losing their job, etc.
- Organizing opportunity: Court cases create a crisis in a community and for many supporters court support gives them an opportunity to move from a quiet supporter to an active one.
- Community awareness: Court cases create an opportunity to educate your community, local media, and legislators about the injustices.
- Bring the issue home: Court cases give defendants and advocates the opportunity to localize and put a human face on the issues. To many people, these issues seem like simple policy matters until they learn of a community member facing jail.
- The fate of the defendant: Quite simply, judges and prosecutors are less likely to screw people over when they have a large public audience. Court support helps hold the system accountable.
- Important information to include when promoting court support: Type of hearing, Motions that will be filed, Departments, Times, Full address of the courthouse, and any parking info that is available.
We need to be there with the defendants and be there for them every day.
- What is Court Support?
Court support is a group of tactics used to support defendants while they are going through the legal systems. It is important to understand that as activists, we possess a toolbox of tactics.
Remember, the health and safety of the defendant must ALWAYS be your first priority.
Who Can Do Court Support?
YOU and anyone who cares about the persecution of activists.
Court support is one of the most compassionate things we can do as advocates. It is a way to stand with the most vulnerable of those who serve this movement and court support is a way to care for them while they go through these ordeals.
For additional information, please contact HYPERLINK "mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org"email@example.com. If you are definitely attending one of the trials, please let us know, and send us your notes and observations afterwards to the same email address.
See more info about court support in the attached handout.
All court appearances at 210 West Temple except Feb 6th at 429 Bauchet.
Jan 23--Greg Brice(N17)--jury deliberations, Div 52
Jan 25 Elena (D17) location? time?
Jan 26 Guido (Chris) N30 pre trial.
Jan 27 8:30 am Div 119, Cajid Heartfield's hearing (N30)
Jan 31 Div 51 Emily's sentencing (N17,N30)
Feb 1st Div 40 8:30 am Karo's trial (D17)
Feb 1st Div 52 (?) Steve Leaderman (N30)
Feb 2nd Div 46 Danny Johnson sentencing (N30)
Feb 2nd Jessica Reyes (D17) Div 40
Feb 6 8:30 am 429 Bauchet Carol Tokeshi and Johnny O Kane arraignments (N30)
Feb 7th Steven Releford dept 38 (D17) pretrial
Feb. 7th 9am Patrick Meighan pre trial (N30) dept 40
Feb 15 Shaimaa (D17) Div 52 (prob. 9 am)