Despite a fine performance by New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union attorney Barbara Keshen, the sad, obedient jury did what the state wanted and convicted the Trespassive Three of Occupy NH for “Criminal Trespass” for the crime of exercising their rights to free speech and assembly after 11pm in Manchester’s Veteran’s Park.
The jury’s guilty verdict basically says that a city ordinance can trump the constitutional supposed “protections” for the rights we allegedly have as human beings. It is a terrible decision against their fellow human beings.
After the trial, several activists awaited the release of the jury and attempted to offer cash for a quick interview. They were not having it, one even saying “we’re not talking to you” which is a strange thing to say, since she was walking alone when she said it. (I didn’t record that interaction.) Were they instructed to not talk to us? One juror in the video says they weren’t given such an instruction, but I have to wonder if that is true.
The juror who speaks to us later is not shown in the video, at her request. Could that be because she was ashamed of what she did? She decided to talk to us only after all the other jurors and court security had left. The window was cracked on her vehicle as she prepared to leave, and I asked her a second time for an interview, this time offering $30. She graciously gave us ten minutes of her time and answered many questions, discussing what happened in deliberations, civil disobedience, jury nullification, “following the rules”, the state’s claim that the park would turn into a campground if the jury returned a not guilty, the constitution, and the curfew law.
She reveals that there were a few not guilty votes in the initial vote, but they all changed to guilty. The juror claims that she was not pressured to change her mind and expresses that she supports the protestor’s rights, but ultimately decided the curfew ordinance was more important, because we have to have rules in society – even if they violate rights. She seems conflicted and confused. Also included in the video is a short interview with NHCLU head attorney Barbara Keshen.