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‘Not guilty’ in first inauguration protests trial

BREAKING — A jury has acquitted all six defendants in the first trial brought by the Trump administration against inauguration protesters.

There’s no question that some rioting and property damage occurred during the protests, although the demonstrations on the whole were peaceful and most protesters were law abiding. But the government couldn’t prove these defendants were responsible for it. Prosecutors offered no evidence that any of the six committed illegal acts.

Instead, they argued that merely being present made them part a “conspiracy” to engage in rioting, a position that raised serious concerns among civil liberties advocates, who saw the bringing of felony charges against demonstrators who didn’t commit criminal acts as an attempt by the Trump administration to punish and suppress dissent.

Two of the defendants were “street medics” — one of them a professional nurse — who were there to provide first aid to injured protesters. Prosecutors absurdly argued they “aided and abetted” the riot by “patching up protesters and sending them back into action” like soldiers fighting in a war.

Read the story here.

Photo: An image of the Washington D.C. inauguration riots. Whoever set fire to the limo is guilty of a crime. The people standing around watching and taking photos aren’t. Trump’s prosecutors made no effort to differentiate between rioters and bystanders, which violates a fundamental precept of American law that one must have committed a crime to be found guilty of a crime.

 


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