• Planning a Protest? Plan Ahead for Legal Support!

    If you or your organization are planning a protest/rally/demo/action/vigil etc. in the Richmond area, consider contacting for legal support BEFORE you run into trouble. An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure! Contact Richmond Copwatch to get trainings on Know Your Rights, and to get trained Copwatchers with video cameras to your event. sbhcopwatch@gmail.com or 804 303 5449 Contact Richmond Legal Observers to get a trained observer in a neon hat to come out to your event. Email - bakhtiarijj {at} vcu.edu We are working on getting a group of lawyers together who will be able to offer help/ advice/ contact/ and hopefully even representation to activists in Richmond. If you are a lawyer who would like to support social justice movements in the way please get in touch with the organizers of this website at rvaabc@gmail.com
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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.

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

Breaking: Occupy Chapel Hill Raided- Richmond Activist Detained

Breaking news- we just received word that the occupation of a building in Chapel Hill during the Carrboro Anarchist Bookfair was raided vby cops with guns drawn, and Richmond anarchist/activist and resident of the Flying Brick Library Ellen Crawford is currently detained. That is all we know at this time, more as we get it.

Now, more than ever, Richmond Anarchists and activists could use your support and love. Send love, help out, fundraise for legal funds, anything that helps!

Solidarity with Chapel Hill/Carrboro!!!

Call to Support Local Activists!

Hello Friends!

This is a draft of a letter concerning a pattern of discriminatory police repression and intimidation of local Richmond activists. If your organization supports the Occupy Richmond movement, the Wingnut Anarchist Collective, causes for social justice, or our civil rights in general, please consider endorsing, posting on your websites, sending out on your email lists, and sending the following letter to the addresses below:

letters@styleweekly.com, letters@timesdispatch.com, letters@richmondfreepress.com, editor@commonwealthtimes.com, editor@rvanews.com, editor@richmag.com, “Kevin/GayRVA” , news@richmondfreepress.com, news@timesdispatch.com, news@wric.com, newstips@wtvr.com, news@wrir.org, newsroom@nbc12.com, Reva.trammell@richmondgov.com, “Robertson, Ellen F. – Council Member” , bruce.tyler@richmondgov.com, Marty.Jewell@richmondgov.com, charles.samuels@richmondgov.com, Kathy.graziano@richmondgov.com, ASKTHEMAYOR@richmondgov.com, “chris hilbert” , doug.conner@richmondgov.com, cynthia.newbille@richmondgov.com, BRYAN.NORWOOD@RICHMONDGOV.COM

Get the word out and help support local organizers! If you have any questions or concerns please get in touch at wingnut_collective@yahoo.com

Thank You!

To Whom It May Concern:

We the undersigned would like to express our concern that members of the Richmond Police Department may be singling out a group of Richmond activists for harassment. Specifically Richmond’s anarchist community, including the Wingnut Anarchist Collective.

The Wingnut Anarchist Collective is an anarchist organization based in Richmond’s Southern Barton Heights neighborhood on the Northside. Its members are involved in helping to feed homeless people through their support of the free weekly Food Not Bombs meal in Monroe Park, facilitating a neighborhood grocery distribution, and encouraging correspondence with prisoners. They are also active in local anti-war, civil rights, LGBTQ, and womens reproductive freedom movements.

Wingnuts also participate in a program called CopWatch, in which volunteers observe and record police activity and watch for abuses. The program has been particularly active during the First Fridays art walk, which has seen encounters between police officers and Black youth.

While participating in September’s First Friday monthly CopWatch patrol, Jeremy Hawthorne, a member of the Wingnut Anarchist Collective, was arrested and is currently awaiting trial on fallacious charges.

On Nov. 9, two Richmond anarchists, Hunter Singleton and Wingnut member Eric Scott, were arrested while marching around Monroe Park with hundreds of members and supporters of Occupy Richmond. The march took place 10 days after a massive police operation, carried out at 1:15 in the morning, that shut down the Occupy Richmond encampment at Kanawha Plaza.

On the evening of the march, people were concerned that the police, again out in large numbers, might use tear gas against the marchers. As a result, many marchers wore kerchiefs, scarves, or other cloths soaked in vinegar around their necks or faces. And yet, only Eric and Hunter were arrested, handcuffed, and charged with wearing a mask in public. Video footage of the arrests show no resistance on the part of Eric or Hunter.

All of these cases carry felony charges, which following a conviction would severely curtail the accused’s rights and make finding employment an even more difficult prospect in the current job market.

Our concern is that at least some members of the Richmond Police Department may have decided that the Wingnut and anarchist activists are fair game for harassment. Given the volatility of the times – high unemployment, deep anxieties over the economy and growing concerns about police conduct, as in the department’s overreaction to the Final Four street gatherings around Virginia Commonwealth University, we the undersigned organizations and concerned individuals of the Richmond area hereby call on Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones and Richmond Police Chief Bryan Norwood to make it clear to all members of the Richmond Police Department that discriminatory treatment of members of the public, regardless of political beliefs or affiliations, will not be tolerated.

Signed: