2 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, August 2, 1999
Charges againzst protesters rimse
Ch gEsIfeelv " said defendant Anya Wislocki. Tempers flare outside State Theater
"It was clear they had no evidence against us," she Hundreds of movie-goers lined South State Street for Ann Arbor's premiere
Continued from Page 1 said. of "The Blair Witch Project" late Thursday night, crowding the area outside the
the testimony from fence company representatives did The other defendants cleared of charges include David State Theater.
not clear the defendants. Blair, Renee Brunk, Shanta Driver, Melissa Greene, Although a line formedtfrom the theater down the sidewalk, as tickets for the
"None of these defense witnesses were on the site. Luke Massie, Johnathan Payne, Melissa Resch and midnight showing went on sale around 11:30 p.m., people began to crowd in
They never even saw the fence," Connors said. Jason Wade. front of the theater and a large mass formed outside the ticket office, spilling
"They saw video the defense showed them," Connors Although another protester was acquitted last month into the street.
added. on felony riot charges, nine defendants are currently State Theater officials and Ann Arbor Police Department bike cops attempt-
Although defendants said the process had been a long being tried in circuit court. ed to clear people from the street and the traffic island at South State and East
one, they said the decision was still cause for celebra- - Daily Staff Reporter Mahvish Khan contributed to William Streets.
tion. this report. Some unhappy movie-goers, who lined up as early as $:34 p.m., were not
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Continued from Page 1
The attorneys contend the incitement
to riot and riot charges are a violation of
the Constitution's First Amendment right
to free speech as well as the 14th
Amendment due process clause, claim-
ing the meanings of public terror, alarm
and riot are vague and legally undefined.
"These statutes are unconstitutional,"
Massie said. "It's overboard to impose a
10-year punishment for a vague concept
that has no concrete definition."
Washtenaw County Assistant
Prosecutor Patricia Peters disagreed con-
tending that defendants had caused a
"I think pulling on a fence would
cause the terror of being injured," Peters
said. "I submit to the court ... that this
would cause a state of public terror and
Although the majority of testimony
and arguments were heardThursday, the
defense is expected to submit addition-
al information to Shelton Aug. 9. A rul-
ing is expected to be reached by the end
of the month.
In the event that Shelton denies the
motion to dismiss the charges, defense
attorneys have made additional motions
specific to the defendants.
Among them include a motion to
sever charges for Rackham student
Jessica Curtin. Shelton had previously
consolidated the trials for the defendants
based on like charges. Curtin said she
does not wish to be tried collectively.
Defense attorneys also requested a
motion to dismiss the charge against Ann
Arbor resident Robin Alvarez, who is
accused of inciting a riot.
Additionally, Massie and Washington
are challenging Washtenaw County's
jury selection procedures, claiming that
it underrepresents black and other
minority county residents.
The attorneys said they believed it is
important that KKK counterdemonstra-
tors be tried by jurors drawn from a
"As a matter of basic social equality
and democracy, it is essential that black
and other minority communities be fair-
ly represented in jury pools,' Massie
The prosecution requested for the
defense motion to be denied, contending
there are no grounds for challenging the
current jury selection procedures.
"We're interested in having a faircross
section of the community represented on
the jury pool, but it doesn't appear there
is problem with that;' Peters said.
"What they're really asking for could
take a long period of time and delay
things. And, there's no need to delay the
trials," she said.
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