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Center Column Archives
On August 10th, Thomas Matzat and supporters appeared before the Yolo County District Court for a pre-trial hearing. Thomas is being charged with five counts of felony vandalism, fourteen counts of misdemeanor vandalism, and one misdemeanor charge for “possessing a marking substance with the intent to commit vandalism”. At the hearing, Thomas’ pro bono legal team provided evidence that police lied about security footage used to identify him.
Approximately 50 supporters of the Santa Cruz Eleven packed into Department 6 of the Santa Cruz Courthouse on August 20th, for a hearing before Judge Paul Burdick to decide if the case against the seven remaining defendants would be dismissed. The defendants, their attorneys, and supporters were disappointed when Judge Burdick ruled that the case will proceed, and scheduled a confirmation hearing on January 4th, 2013
, followed by a preliminary hearing on Monday, January 7th
On August 7th, a vigil was held at the Santa Cruz court house for Attorney Ed Frey, who was ordered to report to jail on August 8th to begin serving a six month sentence he received for his participation in the Peace Camp 2010 sleep ban protests. Community members occupied the court house steps for 15 hours until escorting Frey to jail, where he was fitted with an ankle bracelet security monitor.
An abandoned historic building in Oakland was unveiled on the morning of August 13th as the Victor Martinez Community Library. The building was one of seven library branch casualties of budget cuts in the late seventies, and since then it has mostly sat empty. On the first day of the re-opening, donations of books poured in and area children helped to start a community garden in a side lot. In less than 15 hours, however, OPD raided the Community Library. The next morning, activists re-opened the library on the sidewalk in front of the building and it has been growing since.
On July 13th, the legal team for the Davis Dozen, students and faculty of UC Davis who allegedly blockaded a corporate bank that appeared on their campus last Fall, filed a Pitchess Motion which alleges that the officers in the case used excessive force or lied about the events surrounding the defendants' arrest. This will provide the court access to the officers' records, allowing confirmation of past use of excessive force against the defendants. Their next court date has been set for Friday, August 24th
The seven remaining Santa Cruz Eleven defendants — Cameron Laurendeau, Franklin "Angel" Alcantara, Brent Adams, Desiree Foster, Becky Johnson, Robert Norse, and Gabriella Ripley-Phipps — will have a preliminary hearing on Monday, August 20th
before Judge Paul Burdick. The Santa Cruz Eleven were each charged with two felonies and two misdemeanors in association with the Fall 2011 occupation of the vacant Wells Fargo Bank building located at 75 River Street in downtown Santa Cruz.
On August 4th, a roving dance party with a large banner that read “Fuck The Permits, F.T.P., Fuck The Police” marched in solidarity with the vendors of Art Murmur. On July 6th, uniformed security officers had informed Art Murmur vendors that anyone without a permit would be ticketed, starting in August. Many vendors and artists ignored the threat of being ticketed, and set their tables in illegal spaces.