Posts Tagged ‘hunter singleton’

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.

Please come out to support Richmond anarchist and activist Hunter Singleton at his Pre-trial court appearance on Wednesday January 18th at 11am at the Manchester Courthouse on Richmond’s Southside at 920 Hull Street.

Two activists, Eric and Hunter were arrested on November 9th during a march for Occupy Richmond. They were on the sidewalk, when Eric, then Hunter, were grabbed by Richmond police and dragged into Monroe Park. They have been charged with the Felony of wearing a mask in public.They were part of a large group of people who applied apple cider vinegar to bandannas and scarves as a preventative measure against tear gas the Richmond Police are well known for using. The legal, peaceful march they were participating in knew that there were dozens of Richmond Police awaiting them around Monroe Park.

Additionally both are facing charges of disorderly conduct. Eric is facing a concealed weapons charge for the food tool he had in his backpack for eating apples with, and Hunter is facing a controlled substances charge for his prescription medication. The charges they are facing could result in up to 5 years.

Eric has taken a plea deal on his charges, but Hunter is still dealing with the courts. Please come out to show your solidarity with Hunter!

You can find more about the background of this story online here:

http://richmondlegalsupport.wordpress.com/eric-and-hunter/

This is the statement that was read by a member of Occupy Charlottesville on Monday night during their solidarity march with the 2 folks arrested at an Occupy Richmond March:

Tonight we are marching as part of Occupy Charlottesville along the Downtown Mall in Charlottesville in response to the arrests of Eric Scott and Hunter Singleton during a march in Richmond on November 9th, 2011.

Eric and Hunter were charged with felony charges for wearing masks, something most of the marchers were doing as a protective measure against tear gas and police surveillance. This move shows that the police had specifically targeted them for having been involved in activism and anarchist organizing

We march tonight to strengthen the regional movement to occupy public spaces and all spaces and to show that solidarity with those imprisoned is possible, doesn’t matter where we are. We march tonight in recognition of the old saying that “an injury to one is an injury to all” when fighting against systemic oppression and injustice. To Mayor Dwight Jones and Police Chief Bryan Norwood we say that we are watching and we have each others’ backs. To the Charlottesville City Council we also say that we have a regional network of people who support each other and are willing to stand up to keep these occupations going for the long haul.

Gay RVA posted a letter submitted in solidarity with Eric Scott and Hunter Singleton on their website today. They also included a picture of one of the banners made by Richmond Anarchists at the beginning of the Occupy Richmond occupation of Kanawha Plaza.

http://www.gayrva.com/news-views/letter-richmond-police-harassment-of-local-activists/

 

We expressed solidarity with Roman anarchists specifically because they were attacked by “non-violent” protesters for engaging in acts of property destruction during Occupy Rome.

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

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

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:

The Occupied Mind blog has written about the Richmond Occupation, and specifically has this post about the arrests of Hunter and Eric during an Occupy Richmond March. They have specifically addressed the relationship between occupiers and our anarchist collective. They also critique the actions of the Richmond Police Department, and question the singling out of 2 anarchists and long term activists during the march.

News and editorials about the Occupy Wall Street movement, with specific local coverage of Occupy Richmond. On Occupy by an Occupier, for everyone.

http://occupiedmind.blogspot.com/2011/11/merry-pranks-and-police-state-politics.html

More news coverage from NBC 12 from yesterday after court.

via Occupy Richmond protesters appear in court.

http://www.nbc12.com/story/16009387/2011/11/10/occupy-richmond-protesters-appear-in-court?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=6439857

We got word about 45 minutes before the scheduled solidarity demo that Hunter Singleton had gotten out on bail. Happy to hear that 2 of our friends were released, we decided to hold the demonstration anyways, since folks might not hear in time and more than 1400 other people were not released from the Richmond City Jail today.

Around 25 people came out to show support. We had pots and pans and whistles and horns and train whistles and cans and bucket drums and even some real drums. We marched around the perimeter of the jail three times. We stopped along the way, yelling greetings to our friends and everyone on the inside.

We wrapped up singing a song about freedom, and then lighting candles and sitting on the sidewalk.

Thanks to everyone who came out tonight to support Eric and Hunter, as well as to support everyone incarcerated at the Richmond City Jail. Folks who enjoyed the experience or feel like they missed out are welcome to come to future Anarchist Black Cross meetings and events. Our monthly meetings are on the 2nd Tuesday of every month at 7pm at 2005 Barton Avenue. We also host a monthly letter writing to prisoners event on the last Saturday of every month from 12-3pm in Monroe Park at the corner of Main and Laurel during the Really Really Free Market.