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Jury Regrets Convicting Cecily McMillan (Zuccotti) Of Felony Assault Of An Officer

Posted 4 months ago on May 6, 2014, 1:58 p.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: Justice4Cecily

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.”

READ MORE AT GOTHAMIST.

Take a moment to sign this petition for her pardon and release.

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.

READ MORE AT GUARDIAN

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"We now serve a people’s warrant for arrest on Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden!"—People's Justice in ABQ

Posted 4 months ago on May 6, 2014, 11:46 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: APQ, PeoplesJustice

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.


Backgrounder: DOJ Investigation Confirms: Albuquerque Police 'Executing' Citizens


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.


On May 19, Justice Is In Your Hands! #Justice4Cecily.


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

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Verdict Day: Statement From #Justice4Cecily on Outrageous Turn of Events (#YouAreNeeded)

Posted 4 months ago on May 5, 2014, 8:57 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: Justice4Cecily

HOW TO HELP: #YouAreNeeded Fightback Fund


“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

Statement from the Justice4Cecily.com Team:

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:

“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.”

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.



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May Day 2014

Posted 4 months ago on May 1, 2014, 9:52 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: MayDay2014

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ALLIANCE OF ACTIVISTS TO LAUNCH NEW POPULIST POLITICAL PARTY IN DETROIT

Posted 4 months ago on April 30, 2014, 10:58 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: AfterPartyUSA

THE AFTER PARTY WILL WORK FOR A GUARANTEED BASIC INCOME FOR ALL AMERICANS, REMOVAL OF CORRUPT POLITICIANS

DETROIT, MI — A grassroots alliance of community leaders and social justice activists is launching a new nationwide political party with a weekend of celebration and service in Detroit. The new party, dubbed the After Party, is a movement to inspire people of all ages to take decisive action in their communities to tackle growing inequality, the erosion of civil liberties, and rampant corruption in the political arena by promoting a platform of six principles that includes a guaranteed, inflation-adjusted basic income for all American citizens.

Priscilla Grim, founding organizer of Occupy Wall Street and co-creator of the We Are The 99% blog, said "The After Party is an opportunity for independent candidates to hack into the political system and bring deep systemic change by offering what people need most right now: a vision and a plan for a post-capitalist future that works for all of us."

The Party will engage in a series of missions in the months leading up to the Fall election, and beyond, focused on cultivating new leadership, building local power bases and rooting out under-performing politicians.

“We’re done waiting for politicians to get a clue,” said Carl Gibson, an After Party spokesman, “We’re going to do this ourselves. Between now and November, we’re dedicated to driving out corrupt government officials who only represent those who pay them.”

The After Party plans to expand into several states in the coming months, opening up ballot access to local candidates who pledge to forgo corporate backing and further theParty Platform. After Partiers will also organize grassroots community betterment initiatives outside of the formal political system to provide alternative solutions to local problems.

“We don’t have another six to twelve months to wait for change,” said Detroit resident Demeeko Williams. “We want it now - right now. It's time to send a jolt of electricity through the political system to let it know we are here, we're not being represented and we're coming for you."

The After Party will launch on Friday, May 2nd at 7pm at historic Bert’s Marketplace in Eastern Market, 2727 Russell St, Detroit, MI 48207, with a signing of the Party Manifesto.

•••

The After Party is a political movement for a democratic revolution in the USA.

Media Contacts

Demeeko Williams, Detroit After Party

demeeko@afterpartyusa.org

Priscilla Grim, After Party National Steering Committee

priscilla@afterpartyusa.org

Carl Gibson, After Party National Steering Committee

carl@afterpartyusa.org

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