Wednesday, June 18th 2014 – 10am – Activists convened at the NH Supreme Court to hear Rich Paul’s attorney argue for an appeal. That means even though Rich Paul lost his original trial, he can ask a higher court to hear arguments to decide if the original ruling was wrongly decided. If they decide to go forward with the appeal, Rich will have a whole new trial. The Supreme Court’s ruling is where laws are challenged and clarified. Whatever they decide has the potential to set future precedent.
The issue upon which the State and the Defense disagree is whether the judge in Rich’s case gave proper instruction to the Jury on the concept of Jury Nullification. The Defense argued that the judge did an inadequate job of fully informing the jury of their powers to nullify. The lawyer for the State argued that the jury has no right to nullification — that it is illegal but “tolerated” by the govt.
Before the hearing, free speech activist Ian Freeman was threatened with arrest for writing with sidewalk chalk in front of the sacred Supreme Court building. The officer who threatened him later claimed (off camera) the charge would be “Criminal Mischief”. Unfortunately, Ian is out in the world on bail conditions. Otherwise he’d be in jail. If he’s arrested, that means automatic jail time. As an activist, this severely cripples his ability to engage in peaceful non-compliance. I was tempted to take up the chalk myself and challenge the court’s bluff, but alas, it was not the time and place for me. I’ve chosen to focus my activism on the right to record, and I have too many responsibilities right now to risk a jail sentence.
To achieve freedom, there’s going to be risk involved. Unfortunately, no one in the freedom crowd was courageous enough or prepared enough to take this risk for freedom.
About 15 “Free Staters” (liberty people) attended the hearing for their friend and fellow activist. There are approximately 1500 Free Staters in New Hampshire, so the turnout was poor, in my opinion. One of the attendees even called out his fellow activists with a call to Porc411: “There is a Free State case in the Supreme Court today. The building should be packed. Get your butts over here. That’s why you moved here!”