Ryan Maddox on the “Live Free or Dance” Arrests in Central Square

On September 9, at approximately 10:15PM, members of the Keene community gathered for “Live Free Or Dance” at Central Square, for the 2nd week in a row. The dance party was short lived however, because not a minute into the fun, police showed up and instead of protecting and serving what they did was entirely different, as you’ll discover below.

Ryan & Roz being attacked by Keene Law Enforcers. Photo by dooms-day-device.com

They said that they received a noise complaint (that they seem to have fabricated) and made numerous assertions such as: we need to obtain a permit, that the music was excessively loud and disturbing, and that we couldn’t use the openly-available power.

Then they asked who owned the sound equipment. No one stepped forward. After some time multiple individuals independently claimed ownership of the equipment. The police took the word of an individual that they had in their custody for an unrelated incident which the cops claim was an assault. They chose to arrest him after he indicated he owned the sound equipment used that night. The police knew that the sound equipment didn’t belong to him. After kidnapping him they went back to the gazebo with the intention of stealing the sound equipment. Although they were notified and aware that they had no means to know with certainty who the equipment belonged to, they maintained that they were going to take it by force. As is typically the case when law enforcement is involved, violence ensued. One officer began aggressively tugging on the equipment, attempting to steal it. Derrick J Freeman and Roz tried to hold onto the property, and then that officer violently assaulted and kidnapped Derrick [video].

While that occurred, Roz too was assaulted and kidnapped by another officer. I saw the assault and ran over to Roz to grab her away from the violent man with a badge. He pushed us to ground (at which point I suffered a mild head injury) and kidnapped us. Roz suffered bruises on her arm as a result.

Minutes later, they took Derrick to a vehicle and pepper-sprayed him while he was standing cuffed in front of the car door. While preparing to spray him, another officer deliberately blinded video journalist Jason Repsher with a flashlight to obscure the recording of the cruel and sadistic application of force.

The three of us were transported to the House Of Corrections where Derrick, in the spirit of the event, spent the rest of the night dancing without stop. We were all eventually liberated on bail. Roz and I were both charged with obstruction of government administration and resisting arrest, while Roz received an additional charge of obstruction of apprehension. We have a scheduled court date of October 4 at 8:30AM.

It’s really unfortunate that those who purport to protect us are often indistinguishable from thugs and gangsters in their actions. Perhaps when innocent dance parties are a threat to the police it is an indication that we are living under a tyrannical state.

Keene Law Enforcers Use Violence to Shut Down “Live Free or Dance”

A peaceful and fun evening for the Keene community devolved into chaos when law enforcers, employed by the city of Keene, showed up to make threats and eventually kidnapped three people, Ryan Maddox, Roz and Derrick Freeman.

I was in Central Square to dance but instead my evening was spent livestreaming the violence that is unfortunately becoming more commonplace with militant law enforcers “just doing their jobs.” I was able to broadcast the following seven video playlist live:

Police interrupted the celebration in Central Square at around 10:15. According to Jason Repsher, “The music had only been playing for a minute and it wasn’t very loud.” [Video: Live Free or Dance Begins Peacefully] Keene native Jacqueline Lemieux commented on a Keene law enforcer’s claim that “a citizen complained” about the noise:

That is a flat out lie. The music had just been turned on and I was walking in front of The Stage and over towards the common and was not able to hear any music at all until I arrived a few feet from the gazebo. KPD is quickly developing a habit of lying and abusing its public and I will not stand for it!

Jason Repsher stated in the description of the video he recorded (below) that:

The cops make up a story that they were called because of a complaint and the cops insist on permits and licensing in order to play music in the park. The cops wanted someone to claim the equipment so they could check ID.

Repsher continues:

The cops knew it wasn’t his, but apparently the kid had gotten into trouble earlier in the night and they wanted a reason to arrest this kid. After the kid was arrested and hauled off, the cops proceed to take it upon themselves to seize the equipment. At which point, Derrick Freeman, Ryan Maddox and Roz get arrested in the attempt to prevent the property from being stolen by the Keene PD (for holding onto the property while the cops pry it away). After Derrick Freeman is handcuffed one of the officers maces and puts him in the patrol car. In the video you can see the officer shake his pepper spray at which point two officers come over and attempt to block my video.

When you watch the above video take note of how at least two law enforcers shine their flashlights at cameras just before Derrick gets maced. It seems obvious that they were attempting to censor the recording of their violent colleague. It’s unknown if this technique is taught during their training, is department policy or just the actions of two law enforcers who want to hide their aggressive actions from the public.

Another witness, Nick Ryder, posted the following on the Free Keene Forum along with his video:

1. Police show up on a noise complaint and inform people to tear down the lights, speakers, etc and not use city power.
2. Police ask who owns the equipment. Nobody answers.
3. After a while, random other guy (non-activist) claims to own them. He is arrested.
4. Police come to confiscate said equipment under the baseless claim that random guy owns it.
5. Derrick contests the claim, saying he owns it, and does not let the police take it.

All three were eventually released after many hours in solitary confinement. There are reports that Derrick was able to continue the dance party at the Cheshire County House of Corrections for four hours. He was able to eventually able to return home to shower out the mace before going to work. Stay tuned for more information about future court dates and danceobedience.

Photos used in this post were taken by James Schmill of Dooms-Day-Device.com.

Liberty Belle Moves to Keene

The claim that Keene is the “liberty media capitol of the world” remains unchallenged as new people continue to move here and broadcast the message of liberty. The latest mover is Ali and she brings the Liberty Belles Radio Show with her. Well, half of it. The show originated in her former home of Auburn, Alabama (and home of the Mises Institute) with our mutual friend Leah Farrow. We’ll get to see Leah at nearly every Porcupine Freedom Festival in Lancaster, NH where she applies her trade as a tattoo artist.

The episode below is their first since Ali’s move to Keene and the two friends discuss what they’ve been up to during their longer than normal (and action-packed) hiatus.

Find (and like) them on Facebook and never miss another Liberty Belles Radio podcast at Podomatic.

Here’s the episode where Ali discusses her move to Keene!

Superior Court Judge John P. Arnold to Retire

Ian Freeman recently learned, thanks to his incarceration, that Cheshire County Superior Court Judge John P. Arnold will be retiring. Our man on the inside was not able to learn the dates of John’s retirement and my followup calls to the Superior Court in Keene didn’t yield any answers, but Barbara Hogan, the clerk of the court, did confirm that John is retiring.

On Friday’s Free Talk Live, Ian Freeman called in and spoke to Mark Edge and myself about the news and reminded us about John’s time on the bench:

Ian called the retirement “convenient” since John would have faced a hearing by the Redress of Grievance panel for his banning of all recording devices, which is in violation of the New Hampshire open records statutes. John P. Arnold banned people from wearing shirts with messages on them, demanded that court watchers withhold display of emotion in the courtroom and forced people in the courtroom to stand for him, stifling their convictions (religious and otherwise). In a previous episode of Talley.TV I reported on Judge Arnold Enforces Decorum “Strongly,” Threatens Talley.TV and Causes Disruption of Court Proceedings.

According to the State of New Hampshire’s website:

There are now 18 fulltime judges [at 11 locations] serving on the Superior Court throughout the state. Under the State constitution, the Governor, with approval of a majority of the Executive Council appoints judges who hold office until they attain the age of 70.

Dave Ridley continues to illustrate the episode of Free Talk Live that took place the evening of Ian’s caging by John Arnold in his latest report:

Despite being locked away at the Cheshire County House of Corrections, it’s good to see that Ian was still able to scoop the mainstream media. There’s no doubt the “State of New Hampshire” will fill this position and we’ll have yet another Superior Court Judge in Keene, NH. The governor will nominate a new judge (with the agreement of an executive council) so there won’t be a delay in enforcing bad laws and enriching the state with new fines.

Note that this governor is not friendly to the Free State Project and may use this as an opportunity to send a message to the people who move to “New Hampshire’s Liberty Activism Destination.” Harsher enforcement of bad laws will just serve as more opportunities to tell people about the peaceful civil disobedience happening in Keene as more people move here and say no to aggressive government. Since Ian’s caging, several people have moved and many more have publicly announced that they will be moving as a result. This is exactly what Ian had hoped for and as he put it, “it was worth it!!”

John has punished a lot of people during his time on the bench but I’m only aware of three liberty activists that faced him in court: Russell Kanning, Jim Johnson and of course Ian Freeman. Another high profile incident during John P. Arnold’s tenure as Judge was the suicide by self-immolation on the sidewalk outside where Arnold and his staff go to work in the Keene community. Like this, the news was released first by FreeKeene.com. Cases such as these receive more publicity because they take place in a city that Ian Freeman calls the “liberty media capitol of the world.” As more people have become aware of John’s harmful use of judicial powers he has become open to more scrutiny. His response was to ban cameras and other electronic devices that concerned members of the community use to hold public servants accountable.

There’s no way to know why he is retiring but if John P. Arnold’s August 8th Order to Media is any indication, he doesn’t care for transparency and the accountability that comes with it. His three pages of restrictions took place less than one month before the US District Court released a strongly worded opinion in support of recording public servants, like John. A key quote from the recent decision is in sharp contrast to the media crackdowns taking place in Keene area courts:

Gathering information about government officials in a form that can readily be disseminated to others serves a cardinal First Amendment interest in protecting and promoting “the free discussion of governmental affairs.”

Will the next Superior Court Judge be more camera-friendly, or will he and other public servants decide to resign when faced with accountability and a community in search of true justice?

Meg McLain Tells Fox News About Her Arrest for Selling Lemonade

This morning Free Keene blogger Meg McLain was on Fox News, along with Robert Fernandez, to discuss yesterday’s successful Lemonade Freedom Day. Despite being a nationwide event, it appears that there were only three arrests made on Lemonade Freedom Day and all were in Washington, DC. Everywhere else in the country, including Keene, cops used their discretion and ignored the open agorism taking place. Here’s Meg and Robert on Fox and Friends this morning:

Meg wasn’t given much time to discuss the abuse she faced at the hands of the U.S. Capitol Police Department but she did post the unfortunate details to her new blog, MegMclain.com.

UPDATE: Both Robert and Meg presented their views on liberty to the large audience of Fox and Friends. They spoke about good people disobeying bad laws and Robert was even able to mention jury nullification. Here are some quotes from this segment that I first posted on CDEvolution.org:

When you’re shutting down a kids lemonade stand, you’re basically telling them they can’t do anything, they can’t follow their dreams, they can’t set a goal and achieve that goal without getting permission from the government first. I think this is absurd. We’re all individual with an inherent right that we should be able to sell goods and services with other voluntary individuals that want to participate without having any problems and asking permission.

– Robert Fernandez

When the rules are inappropriate, there’s no reason that anybody should ever have to endure what I went through just for selling 10 cent glasses of lemonade.

– Meg McClain

The Fox Host asks Meg what she had to endure, which you can find more on at MegMcLain.com.

Fox Host: Robert, Ultimately what to you want to happen here. What are you hoping to achieve?

The biggest thing that I’d like to achieve here is to get good people to disobey bad laws. Police are human, we’re all individuals, we all make mistakes, so do the police, so do lawmakers. Not all laws are good, some laws are bad and when we have bad laws we need to disobey them.

– Robert Fernandez

Fox Host: Maybe the message here is to just lighten up.

I think we still need to stand up and disobey these types of laws.

Jurors need to be more informed and need to make decisions based on their conscience.

– Robert Fernandez