The #Justice4Cecily team appreciates the attention you showed to Cecily McMillan’s case last night on The Daily Show, and we agree with your message of Justice for Some that resounds throughout the show. It has become more than abundantly clear since the financial crisis that there are two sets of laws in this country: one for Wall Street and the 1%, and another one for Occupy Wall Street and the 99%.
Unfortunately, your scoreboard of the number of arrests for both of these groups – “Wall Street: 1 - OWS: 1”, however in jest you presented it – gives the impression that somehow justice has been served for Cecily and for the millions of Occupy activists and supporters across the country and around the world. And with this we must respectfully disagree.
You have an important opportunity, Mr. Stewart, with this case to make a powerful statement about the need for reform of our justice system in order to serve all people fairly and blindly. Rather than leave your audience with an ambiguous answer to the question of Justice for Some? We kindly ask that you correct the record on your next show or invite a member of our team to appear and correct it ourselves.
Thank you, again, for standing up for the 99% and for justice for all.
The #Justice4Cecily Team
PS – We are demanding a pardon for Cecily. Please consider signing both our petitions that have started to catch fire, Change.org and Whitehouse.gov.
Cecily McMillan was unjustly found guilty of 2nd degree assault charge, and will be in confinement until her May 19th sentencing. Cecily's current address is below, send her a letter of solidarity today!
Occupy trial juror describes shock at activist's potential prison sentence
A member of the jury that convicted Occupy protester Cecily McMillan of felony assault against an officer yesterday now tells the Guardian he or she regrets their verdict. “I’m very remorseful about it,” the unidentified juror said. “Most just wanted her to do probation, maybe some community service. But now what I’m hearing is seven years in jail? That’s ludicrous. Even a year in jail is ridiculous.”
Cecil McMillan's supporters accused Judge Ronald Zweibel of repeatedly siding with prosecutors and showing hostility to the defence team and their supporters. Zweibel barred Stolar from citing past claims of violent conduct by Bovell. When supporters entered court wearing paper hearts on their chests in an attempted show of solidarity, the judge furiously sent out the jury and ordered a police officer to confiscate the hearts. When a handful chuckled from the gallery at McMillan’s bashful recounting of her university days in Wisconsin, Zweibel ordered them to shut up.
After expressing vague anger during a courtroom sidebar about a Guardian report last month that his court was struggling to find jurors who were not biased against to Occupy, Zweibel went on to impose a total gag order on Stolar and Rebecca Heinegg, McMillan’s second attorney, because of a seemingly innocuous remark Stolar made to the New York Times. McMillan’s supporters described this as a violation of their first amendment rights.
ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Angry protesters took over an Albuquerque City Council meeting Monday night, calling for immediate change at APD, the ousting of both Albuquerque’s Police Chief and Mayor and more.
The meeting got out of control quickly about an hour after it started. Things got so chaotic and unruly that Chief Gorden Eden left and city councilors canceled the meeting.
The scene was unlike anything many people have seen in recent memory inside the council chambers. One person even tried to serve APD Chief Gorden Eden with a warrant for his arrest.
“This is no longer your meeting, this is the people’s meeting. This is democracy in action!” said protester David Correia to the city council.
“We have no control of this meeting! So if this is your meeting, go ahead,” said Albuquerque City Council President Ken Sanchez.
The meeting started like any other, but quickly deteriorated just after 6 p.m. during public comment. That’s when protesters took complete control, pushing many councilors to abandon their seats and leaving citizens to sit in their seats.
Through several chants and “motions” of government, protesters made it clear they were upset with APD and city council “inaction,” demanding immediate change.
Protesters chanted phrases including “fire the damn Chief,” and “fire Mayor Berry.”
The outburst started when protester David Corriea, an assistant professor at UNM, took the podium during public comment. Corriea immediately directed his words towards Chief Gorden Eden.
“We now serve a people’s warrant for arrest on Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden! He is charged with accessory!” shouted Corriea as the group tossed arrest warrants in the air.
One woman even tried to hand Eden a warrant for his arrest. However, Eden got up and left without acknowledging the woman.
“We’re not leaving this podium, I am not leaving this podium!” Corriea continued to shout at Eden as he left the room.
Protesters kept their promise, not leaving the podium, and taking over when councilors tried to a take a break.
“We will be back in five minutes!” announced Councilor Sanchez.
Councilors took that break for about ten minutes, but protesters kept going.
“Quit sitting on your hands!” shouted one woman with a bullhorn.
Some councilors eventually returned to the chambers and Council President Ken Sanchez tried to defuse the situation.
“I would prefer to give people an opportunity to speak, we are here to listen to your concerns. Please respect the chambers,” said Sanchez.
But the plea was useless as Sanchez was nearly drowned out by protesters shouting.
“We have no control of this meeting, this meeting is official adjourned,” said Sanchez.
Councilors left, clearly upset, unable to get anything done to fix the troubled police department.
“They’ve got some serious problems that need to be addressed, but we can’t address them by not conducting city business,” said Sanchez.
It took protesters about a half-hour to clear out of city council chambers after the meeting was called off. No one was arrested. Councilors were supposed to talk about proposals to take away the mayor’s power to hire a police chief. They’re now hoping to do that in a special meeting on Thursday.
City Council Press Release – Meeting Adjournment»
Chief Gorden Eden sent out a statement Monday night:
“We understand there are those in our community who have expressed concerns about APD issues related to the Department of Justice report. We are working hard to make proactive improvements now and in conjunction with DOJ recommendations. While we welcome constructive discussions, we do not believe disruption of tonight’s city council meeting was a productive way to meet those goals.” –Chief Gorden Eden
“The corporate state, which has proved utterly incapable of addressing the grievances and injustices endured by the underclass, is extremely nervous about the mass movements that have swept the country in recent years. And if protests erupt again—as I think they will—the state hopes it will have neutralized much of the potential leadership. Being an activist in peaceful mass protest is the only real “crime” McMillan has committed.” - Chris Hedges
We are devastated by the Jury’s verdict today. It has been clear from
day one that Cecily has not received a fair and open trial. The job of
a judge during a jury trial isn't to guide the verdict to fit his
opinion. Judge Zweibel, who consistently suppressed evidence, has
demonstrated his clear bias by consistently siding with the
prosecution. In addition to suppressing evidence, he imposed a gag
order on Cecily’s lawyers, which is a clear violation of their 1st
Amendment Rights, and placed the burden of proof on the defense, not
the prosecution. He is rightly known as ‘a prosecutor in robes’.
Beyond Judge Zweibel, it is disgusting to see vast resources from
taxpayers wasted for over two years to prosecute Cecily. Manhattan DA
Cy Vance has refused to drop this case, pursuing maximum charges
against Cecily while ignoring police violence and misconduct. This is
unfortunately not isolated to Cecily’s case but is indicative of a
system concerned not with justice but with the unrelenting harassment
of dissenters and the powerless.
In the two years awaiting trial, Cecily was never offered anything
less than a felony charge, a charge that would stay with her for the
rest of her life. While awaiting a trial, Cecily has lived in limbo
for two years, not knowing what her future would be, forced to re-live
her trauma every one of those days. Beyond the sexual assault and
physical injuries she sustained, Cecily suffered PTSD and has had
difficulty finishing her master’s degree and continuing her work as a
union organizer and activist.
Despite the chilling precedent this verdict puts forth for activists,
we will not be deterred from seeking social and economic justice, as
evidenced in the courtroom today. Though we’ve held our tongues
throughout this trial as Cecily was personally attacked and degraded,
we could not stand silent today in the face of such a gross
miscarriage of justice. The people had to speak truth to power today
by standing up and will continue to do so as long as this justice
system continues to punish the 99% and protect the 1%.
As journalist Chris Hedges said in a recent article:
state, which has proved utterly incapable of addressing the grievances
and injustices endured by the underclass, is extremely nervous about
the mass movements that have swept the country in recent years. And if
protests erupt again—as I think they will—the state hopes it will have
neutralized much of the potential leadership. Being an activist in
peaceful mass protest is the only real “crime” McMillan has
We recognize that, as poorly as Cecily has been treated these past two
years, she was lucky enough to have an amazing support system
comprised of representation from the National Lawyer’s Guild and
Mutant Legal, as well as significant financial help from supporters of
Occupy Wall Street and a team of ten who tirelessly worked to bring
her case to light and support her through this trying time. It’s
harrowing to imagine how many unfortunate people encounter this system
without the resources Cecily had, though we know countless innocent
people are forced to plea to felonies and ruin their lives every day
in this building.
We will be fighting this unjust verdict in the court of appeals.
Cecily’s lawyers are optimistic, given the circumstances of the case
and the gross bias demonstrated throughout, that we can win on appeal.
Thank you all for your ongoing support throughout this trial. We know
that many share our outrage at this verdict, if you would like to get
involved in jail support, please visit justiceforcecily.com to learn
more about how to best support Cecily.