Monday, February 2, 2009

Two environmental activists get jail time for protest

Click title for link to PB Post article. Some poignant excerpts below:

Tsolkas appeared undeterred, though, telling County Judge Laura Johnson moments before she sentenced him that he had "every intention" of leaving the court and continuing his protests.

He left instead, handcuffed, sentenced to 60 days in jail.

Johnson also adjudicated Tsolkas guilty and gave him terms of probation for all charges, the maximum being one year.

Purvis, 29, was next, receiving a term of 30 days in jail, along with the same terms of probation.

Both had previous criminal convictions resulting in the jail sentences.

"It's unheard of... jail time! Don't forget these are misdemeanors," said Tsolkas' partner Lake Worth City Commissioner Cara Jennings. "They clearly don't want people protesting in Palm Beach County."

At least not protesting while tying up traffic for hours and monopolizing the time of public safety officers. I guess Commissioner Jennings thinks that rules do not apply to her followers.

This from a later version of the article:

All seven could face staggering fines as well.

Assistant State Attorney Danielle Croke told Johnson that the defendants should each pay the more than $21,000 in investigative costs the sheriff's office incurred after deploying its Emergency Field Force to handle the protest. Croke was intent on recovering the money, calling sheriff's office officials to the witness stand to detail the costs.

Croke argued case law allows the judge to fine each defendant for the full amount.

"That's a lot of fund-raisers," the woman with the peace sign earrings whispered to Jennings.

Bake sale? That was Commissioner Jennings' pal former Mayor Marc Drautz' suggestion for College Park sidewalks.

Bad day at 822 N. C. Street.