The City of Keene’s War on Hats on continues and Judge Burke is making you (the taxpayers) pay for what he claims is ‘disrespect.’
This morning, while attending the court proceedings of other activists, Beau Davis was arrested for wearing a hat. This past January James Cemorelis and Matt Griffin, both who are employed by the Keene Police Department – with help from Peter Macy (Keene Bailiff), physically assaulted Pete Eyre for wearing a hat. Those charges, issued by police, were later dropped by the District Attorney’s office.
Since then the bailiffs in Keene haven’t initiated any arrest of those wearing hats inside court. Instead they’ve been asking people to remove their hats and if that person doesn’t they leave it up to the judge. I’m not sure if anyone, other than the officer pictured below, has worn a hat in Keene District courts since January but today Beau did. After calling a recess Judge Burke – the same “judge” who sentenced me to 60 days in jail for contempt – said, “If you still have the hat on when I come back, I’m going to hold you in contempt” according to witnesses. After that Ron Dunn – Keene Bailiff – asks Beau to remove his hat or face arrest.
Beau was later brought back into court to once again face Burke. We’re working on a video of the entire event but ultimately Beau was sentenced to 5 days in the Cheshire Co Jail. No joke, when the police charged Pete with disorderly conduct and resisting the charges were dropped. Probably because wearing a hat isn’t disorderly – or a crime at all – and that it’s not resisting when you go limp. Yet, Beau’s charge is contempt of court – a charge that is heard infront of the same judge who issued it and without due process, like a trial. It’s a loop hole the court is using to punish people for wearing a hat, welcome to 2011 folks.
Please call the Keene District Court (number below), let them know that wearing a hat is NOT a crime. Jails were not built to house people who wear hats, Free Beau.