Rev. Barber found guilty of 2 Moral Monday charges

What a crock.

A judge in Wake County district court on Wednesday dismissed one charge against the Rev. William Barber, the architect of the weekly protests at the N.C. legislature this summer, and found him guilty of second-degree trespass and violating one of the N.C. Legislative Building rules.

How can one trespass on one's own property? The NC Capitol belongs to the people.

Defense attorneys Scott Holmes and Irv Joyner argued shortly that the legislative building rules were too vague to be constitutional.

Extrapolating from that theory, the attorneys further argued that because of the vagueness of the rule, the trespass charge could not stand.

Mary Elizabeth Wilson, the assistant district attorney who has been prosecuting cases from the weekly demonstrations that resulted in more than 900 arrests, described those arguments as “constitutional red herrings.”

Yep, wouldn't want that old Constitution to distract us from the law. I wonder where Judge Joy Hamilton studied law?

Comments

In answer to my own question

Judge Joy Hamilton studied law at UNC-CH.

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"What I see from the folks who are opposing our agenda is whining coming from losers." -- Thom Tillis

More like Judge Judy

Kangaroo courtroom.

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"...the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail

The defendants' lawyers aren't trying these like criminal cases

I'm not a lawyer, but...

Why in hell are people like Irv Joyner in district court? This isn't a constitutional/appellate case yet.

If the goal is to beat the charges in district court (which it should be and can easily be done), someone who knows how to beat a criminal charge needs to be representing the Moral Monday protestors. It's driven me crazy to watch these constitutional lawyers completely ignore or only tangentially touch the obvious lack of criminal intent of the protestors.

The protestors came to address their legislators and the General Assembly like every other lobbyist, firm and advocacy group that comes to the legislature every day the House and Senate are in session.

If I were a Moral Monday protestor (IIWAMMP) facing these criminal charges, I would want an experienced criminal lawyer to address the lack of criminal intent of my actions. IIWAMMP, It appears I got arrested for addressing my legislators with prayer and song without disrupting the business of the legislature -- and that is not a crime, or at least certainly not the one I've been charged with.

 

Swinging for a homer

I think part of the reason for the "Constitutional" approach is the hope that if it works (even once), the rest of the cases would have to be dismissed.

That being said, the diversity of the rulings (some guilty, some not) is already exposing the embarrassing inequities in our criminal justice system. Colon Willoughby tried to deflect that the other day by reminiscing about 1960's protestors taking responsibility for their acts and pleading guilty, but that isn't going to work.

The longer these trials go on, the worse the court system appears to the public. And that in itself may be the lever that brings about change.

And it's a waste of resources

for an already overburdened system.

Stupid is as stupid does.

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"What I see from the folks who are opposing our agenda is whining coming from losers." -- Thom Tillis

Most people who are found guilty will appeal

It's going to be a long and bloody process ... and Steve is right. The judicial system will look more and more like random chaos.

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“Don't tell me what you value, show me your budget, and I'll tell you what you value.”
― Joe Biden

We're With You Rev. Barber

I support Rev. Barber's efforts to bring the trampling of the Constitutional Rights of the people of North Carolina to the forefront. Sometimes arrests accompany peaceful demonstrations, these are the chances we are willing to take to ensure our voices are heard. The current state of affairs within the political environment within North Carolina are sad to say the least. The GOP has seized control of the Statehouse and the rollback of progress made in the last 40+ years continues. Gerrymandering of the Districts boundaries, reducing the early voting window, and voter ID's all point to a Statehouse that has total disregard for the will of the people. Along with voter rights, education and the environment are suffering at the hands of the current state administration. Thank you Rev. Barber, you are the champion of the people and I know that Rev. King would be proud of your efforts. God Bless You!