I was nearly arrested today at the new superior court building while doing jury nullification outreach for the first time in 2014 and also the first time at the new building. In the several year history of doing jury outreach at the court, we’ve never had any real issues, but that’s because we never went inside the court building to conduct the outreach. That’s what set them off today, as they clearly want to protect their new territory from those darn activists who always want to exercise their rights, in this case, freedom of speech.
After I’d successfully handed out a couple dozen NHJury.com fliers in the superior court lobby, court security officer Bob Tebo approached, accused me of “soliciting” and called the sheriffs. I then called up Darryl who was doing “Don’t Take the Plea Deal” outreach the floor below at district court to come record and witness the coming threats. (Darryl had no similar issues with district court’s more professional security staff, by the way.) While waiting, I continued to hand out fliers. Here’s the video, courtesy of Darryl:
Sheriff’s deputy Shanks arrives with another of the grumpy court security officers. He claims the judge says there’s no passing stuff out inside the courthouse. I continue to stand my ground and hand out fliers so Shanks leaves to further consult with the robed man. He returns after a few minutes and begs me to leave. I opt to exit since he asks nicely and says please, but I request the judge’s order in writing. I give Shanks my card and ask him to send me the order when it’s ready. We’ll see if I ever hear from him. Stay tuned here for the latest.
On the positive side, the new court facility’s security is much easier to get through, thanks to the addition of an x-ray machine, plus the courtrooms are much larger (occupancy is 120 for district, 134 superior), meaning that no one will be turned away from future activist trials, as had been known to happen in the old superior courthouse, once the 23 seats inside were full.