Result of Hunter’s Court Today, Donations Towards Court Fees Requested

Today in court, Hunter Singleton accepted a plea deal offered by the prosecutor. The spurious charges of possession of a controlled substance had been previously dropped. Today, the prosecutor also dropped the Felony charge of wearing a mask. In exchange, Hunter took an Alford Plea (basically not saying you are guilty but recognizing that there is evidence against you) to a misdemeanor Disorderly Conduct charge. He was given 90 days, with 87 suspended. He had already served 2 days after his arrest, and will serve 1 more day on Friday.

Hunter has over 200 dollars in court fees, and needs help to pay these. Hopefully there will be an upcoming fundraiser, but in the mean time, if you just want to donate a few dollars towards his costs it would be greatly appreciated. Please get in touch if you want to donate money, or if you have an idea or venue or band for a fundraising event! rvaabc@gmail.com or 2005 Barton Avenue

It is excellent news and a great relief to many of Richmond’s activists, anarchists, and Occupiers that Eric Scott and Hunter Singleton have faired relatively well regarding their charges with resulted from a November 9th Occupy Richmond March. The use of felony charges seems to be a scare tactic by the Richmond Police Department. Participants in the march were using bandannas soaked in vinegar to protect from potential tear gas being used by the RPD (they have a tendency to use tear gas in crowd situations on a fairly regular basis). The felony charge of wearing a mask is a terrible law, and certainly one for anyone participating in political actions to keep in mind. Hopefully one day Virginia will be free of this repressive statute.

Do Not Cover Your Face- zine by Gary Llama

Gary Llama drew a zine in response to the arrests of Eric and Hunter-

Do Not Cover Your Face

Here is a link to the zine!

http://www.archive.org/stream/DoNotCoverYourFaceGaryLlama/donotcoveryourface#page/n19/mode/2up

And to Gary’s site:

http://ovolr.debackle.org/donotcoveryourface.html

 

Virginia Felons- pictures from upcoming film

Follow this link to see pictures from Mark Strandquist’s upcoming short film:

http://cargocollective.com/markstrandquist/2306459/virginia-felons

This project is a direct response to the arrests in made in Richmond, VA November 10th, 2011. Two individuals, one a student, one a local activist, were arrested and charged with a class 6 felony for concealing their identity with handkerchiefs.

Crimes which fall under a class 6 felony include;

-assault and battery
-recruiting juveniles for criminal street gangs
-property destruction of $1000 or more

and

-concealing of one’s identity

The video will have a series of portraits all containing people wearing various ‘socially accepted’ masks ie; scarves for the cold, motorcycle helmets, respirators, santa claus beards, etc. These will be shown silently and the video will end with someone wearing a handkerchief and a brief statement about the city charging students and local activists with a class 6 felony for wearing one. The film will show how we all use these ‘dangerous’ masks on an everyday basis and stripping someone of their rights (right to vote, access to jobs, loans, etc and the social stigma associated with a felony conviction) for something so inherently trivial and innocent can not go unquestioned.

Volunteer Tomorrow for upcoming video on VA Mask Law

A good friend is organizing and filming a video as a response to the recent charges brought against local activists Hunter Singleton and Eric Scott. If you can make it out to help with this project please do!
In response to last week’s arrests and the subsequent felony charges laid upon two peaceful protesters I will be taking portraits tomorrow, Monday, November 14th at 3 pm in monroe park for a short video/promo advertisement for the new website… richmondlegalsupport.org .… The video will have a series of portraits all containing people wearing various ‘socially accepted’ masks ie; scarves for the cold, motorcycle helmets, respirators, santa claus beards, etc. These will be shown silently and the video will end with someone wearing a handkerchief and a brief statement about the city charging students and local activists with a class 6 felony for wearing one. If anyone would like to take part please come out and bring a mask (preferably one that is functional, though anything and everything is welcome). No one’s name or identity will be used or even asked for. The point is to show how we all use these ‘dangerous’ masks on an everyday basis and stripping someone of their rights (right to vote, access to jobs, loans, etc and the social stigma associated with a felony conviction) for something so inherently trivial and innocent can not go unquestioned.

For more information please feel free to contact me but if you want to participate you can simply show up.

Thanks!!

Hope you all are warm and wonderful!
mark strandquist

703 798 6379
www.nomovement.com See More

Movie Screening to Support Eric- Next Saturday!!

The Wingnut Anarchist Collective will be hosting a movie screening next Saturday, November 19th at 7pm as a benefit for Eric Scott’s legal fund.

We will be screening PickAxe a 94 minute film by Crimethinc.

If you enjoyed our screening of If a Tree Falls last month, you should enjoy Pickaxe, which is a longer piece about the occupation of a national park by environmental activists, which was mentioned in If a Tree Falls.

An eclectic mix of activists take a stand to protect an old growth forest from logging at Warner Creek in the Willamette National Forest of Oregon, blockading the logging road and repelling the State Police. Over months a community builds around the illegal blockade as it develops into the Cascadia Free State and similar actions spread across the region. Years after its release, Pickaxe has become a classic document of the potential for grassroots direct action to achieve victory against the forces of both government and big business. Lovingly crafted by the participants themselves, the film expertly presents every moment, from confrontation to celebration. Includes new commentary track by filmmakers Tim Lewis and Tim Ream. [94 min.]

We are asking for people to bring a 3 dollar donation if they can, but no one will be turned away. Please come out to watch this film, learn about Eric’s case and other recent legal cases of Richmond Anarchists, and to maybe decompress a little too.

Eric Scott is one of the 2 people being charged with a felony for wearing a mask during last Wednesday’s Occupy Richmond march.

The Wingnut is a sober, all ages space located at 2005 Barton Avenue. wingnut_collective@yahoo.com or 804 303 5449 for more information

Trigger warning: This movie depicts scenes of violence

Solidarity March in Charlottesville on Monday

On Monday:

In response to the violent arrests of Hunter Singleton and Eric Scott on the evening of November 9th during a march in Richmond, Occupy Charlottesville will be holding a solidarity demonstration along the Downtown Mall on Monday November 14th around 7:30 pm after the General Assembly in Lee Park on Market street.

Eric and Hunter are facing felony charges for wearing masks during the march, something that most everyone in the march was doing as a protective measure against tear gas and police surveillance. This move shows that the police singled them out for being openly involved in activism and anarchist organizing.

We march in Charlottesville to show that solidarity with those imprisoned is possible doesn’t matter where we live and to strengthen the regional movement to occupy public spaces and all spaces. We march also to stand by the age old conviction that “An injury to one is an injury to all” among those who resist systemic oppression and injustice. To Richmond mayor Dwight Jones and Police Chief Bryan Norwood we want to show that even outside Richmond, people are watching and have each other’s backs. To the Charlottesville government and police department we also say that we have comrades all along the region that will support each other and organize to keep our city’s occupation going for the long haul.

Folks from Richmond who want to carpool to Charlottesville should call 804 300 0023 or email wingnut_collective@yahoo.com We will probably leave from the Wingnut around 5pm. Contributions for the cost of fuel would be appreciated

Summary of 1st Court Preceedings Nov. 10th

From Thursday November 10th:

Last night, 2 good friends and members of the Richmond Radical community were arrested during an Occupy Richmond march. Other people around them, posing no threat and in no way intervening were choked, slammed against cars, and even had a bicycle thrown at them by the Richmond Police. The events of last night were no anomaly, and instead are symptomatic of the unwarranted use of violence by police as a mainstay and default. Commanding officers were smug and relishing in the actions taken by their subordinates.

We are looking for more pictures, witness accounts, and video from the police violence last night. Please email them to sbhcopwatch@gmail.com

Over 25 people came out to court this morning to support Eric Scott and Hunter Singleton at their arraignment. Unfortunately, the system had changed plans, and done their arraignments by video earlier in the day. Hunter and Eric never left lockup for the court. This underhanded move by the court is just another example of the injustice present in the system.

Despite Eric and Hunter not being present, Hunter’s court appointed lawyer, Christopher Bradshaw was. The issue at hand was a preliminary bond hearing. For Eric Scott, whose lawyer William Efird was not present, bail/bond was set at $5,000 – Eric Scott is being charged with a Felony for allegedly wearing a mask in public, some sort of weapons charge (pocketknife) and disorderly conduct. Hunter Singleton is being charged with Felony for allegedly wearing a mask in public as well as a Felony for a controlled substance (his prescription medication) and disorderly conduct. Hunter’s bail/bond was set at $7,500.

Because Hunter’s attorney was not given an opportunity to meet Hunter, there should be another bail hearing early next week, and we sincerely hope that Hunter’s bail will be lowered.

The court and Commonwealth’s Attorney are clearly trying to harass and intimidate by the outrageously high bail’s set and the ridiculous felony charges.

The Richmond Anarchist Black Cross is working on support for Eric and Hunter. We will be trying to get in touch with them today and will be in contact with their lawyers. We will see if Hunter and Eric want to be bonded out. The issue with bond is that you pay 10% of the set bail, but you never see that money again. We would need $500 for Eric and $750 for Hunter, which we could not repay. If Hunter, a fulltime VCU student, and Eric want to be bonded out we would love help in raising these funds.

We just called Richmond City Lockup and got word that Eric Scott and Hunter Singleton are still there, and we are not allowed to talk to or visit them. They would not tell us if and when they will be transferred to the City Jail. They have also not updated their system to even show that Eric and Hunter have a bond as an option, so at this point, bonding them out is not yet on the table.

Tonight the Richmond Anarchist Black Cross will be holding a solidarity demonstration at 8pm outside of the Richmond City Jail at 1701 Fairfield Way (Location subject to change if Eric and Hunter are still at Richmond City Lockup [501 North 9th Street] at this time, we will keep you updated). Please come out to show support for Hunter and Eric. Bring candles, signs, banners, flags, whistles, songs, drums, and other things so we can let Eric (a long term Anarchist Black Cross member) and Hunter know that we are working for them on the outside. Anyone who would like to go to the jail as a group is welcome to meet at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective (2005 Barton Avenue) at 7:30pm.

Video of Richmond Police Arresting Eric and Hunter, Throwing a Bike

From tonight’s Occupy Richmond March- the Richmond Police arresting Eric Scott and Hunter Singleton, as well as throwing a bike at protesters.

2 of our Friends Arrested in Monroe Park

From Wednesday/Thursday November 9th/10th 2011

Tonight the Occupy Richmond movement held an event at Gallery 5; screening movies about the Monroe Park Occupation back in March, the Occupy Wall Street movement, and the Occupy Richmond Movement. Afterwards, the folks who were at the event decided to divide into  3 groups and headed out on marches around the city.

One of the 3 groups of Occupy protesters headed towards Monroe Park, where there was a considerable police force waiting. While the protesters stayed on the sidewalk, having already changed their plans regarding which space to occupy, the Richmond Police Department decided to attack anyways.

People who were at Monroe Park are saying that Eric Scott was singled out from the crowd, and dragged off of  the sidewalk by police. Then, Hunter Singleton was also dragged off. They were both handcuffed and put into a wagon. We have heard that they were allegedly charged with something regarding Virginia’s mask laws. Keep in mind that the police can and will change one’s charges at any time, that they can detain you for up to 72 hours with no charges, etc.

Many people involved with the Occupy Richmond movement had prepared for tonight’s marches by putting apple cider vinegar on bandannas in case of the police using tear gas on protesters.Participants received word of school buses waiting by the park, and an aggressive police presence. They had reasons to be concerned for their health and a bandanna soaked in vinegar can help to prevent bodily harm caused by tear gas.

Folks at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective will be waiting by the phone in case either Eric or Hunter call from jail, and we will do what we can to bail or bond them out as quickly as possible, and provide whatever other solidarity might be needed. If you need to get in touch with someone at the Wingnut for the next 24 hours or so, please call 804 300 0023 INSTEAD of the landline, just so we don’t risk keeping that line busy when someone might be calling from jail. Stay tuned for more updates about how you can help.

When we last heard the Occupy Richmond group had settled on Festival Park, next to the Richmond Coliseum on 6th street as the new Occupation location. We would encourage folks interested to head down that way and support the occupation.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.