Sentencing Hearing of March 4 Megaload Blockaders

On Friday, April 6, at 1:00 pm, Cass Davis and Jim Prall will offer statements that describe their reasons for protesting and blocking three transports of tar sands processing equipment that traversed Moscow, Idaho, late on Sunday evening, March 4, 2012.  Idaho state and Moscow city police arrested, jailed, and charged Cass and Jim for disturbing the peace at the intersection of Fourth and Washington streets.  Represented by Dana Johnson of the Northern Rockies Justice Center, both defendants have pled guilty to their misdemeanors and will personally present their motives during their sentencing hearing before Judge John Judge in the Latah County Courthouse.  The officially recorded session is open to the public and reporters, but normal courtroom policy disallows recording devices such as cameras and camcorders.  Please join community members and friends at 1:00 pm on Friday afternoon for this hearing at 522 South Adams Street in Moscow.

On March 4, four remarkably brave activists put their bodies between enormous Alberta tar sands shipments weighing 865,000 pounds and the ecological and climate devastation those “megaloads” will visit on the entire planet.  As three of the last five of 78 ExxonMobil/Imperial Oil modules moved through downtown Moscow, Idaho, four protesters linked arms and sat down in Washington Street ahead of the transports.  Police dragged the two women and two men to the side, arrested Cass Davis and Jim Prall when they attempted to re-enter the roadway, and detained and released Jeanne McHale and Pat Monger when the convoy passed.  In a video by Joshua Yeidel of a KRFP Radio Free Moscow interview, We Won’t Be Accessories to Genocide: Moscow ID, March 4, 2012, Jeanne explained her and her many allies’ motivations for demonstrating, marching, chanting, and even obstructing megaloads and risking arrest in cold and dark winter conditions.  “We’re not going to be accessories to genocide and climate change and increased cancer rates and all the other ecological damages that the tar sands intend to cause…”

Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) activists and community members have gathered along Moscow streets to raise their voices in protest more than forty times since July 15, 2011, when the first transports of Korean-made equipment weighing up to 425,000 pounds each rumbled along Highway 95 from the Port of Lewiston to Fort McMurray, Alberta.  Despite heavy, industry-sponsored police presence and closure of entire rights-of-way, some citizens have entered the crosswalks and streets to briefly block the shipments and halt their ecological death march, before state, county, and city police officers have surrounded, harassed, and pulled them away and/or arrested them.  WIRT members extend their highest appreciation and esteem to each of the 12 arrestees who have sacrificed their freedom and to all of the supportive citizens on Moscow streets and sidewalks over the last nine months.  These good people have borne witness and spoken out for a worthwhile, livable, and healthier future for all of humanity.

To access a more comprehensive compilation of news, photos, videos, and interviews about this ongoing campaign to halt Alberta tar sands transportation and construction projects, please see the March 10 press release, the Wild Idaho Rising Tide website/blog and facebook page, and listen to the Climate Justice Forum radio program on Mondays at 7:30 to 9:00 pm PDT on KRFP Radio Free Moscow.

(WIRT media release)

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