Today, the nine and a courtroom packed full of supporters were back at Concord’s district court for a short status conference. During the hearing, Footloose was charged with additional counts of “disorderly conduct”. Now, in addition to the disorderly charge that kicked off the NH9 arrests, where he was sitting quietly in the audience, they are charging him with ANOTHER disorderly for speaking loudly in protest while he was being arrested. Further, he’s being hit with a disorderly and “breach of bail” for speaking in the hallway at the Legislative Office Building in November.
Stay tuned to Free Keene for more on this developing free speech case.
This bill would give police the right to tell any person they must stay back at least 30 feet.
A new bill was introduced to the NH House on January 5, 2022 that, if passed, could have serious, far-reaching consequences for 1st amendment auditors and anyone attempting to witness or film police interactions in New Hampshire.
NH HB 1025 was presented to the New Hampshire House Committee on January 19, 2022. Committee members voted unanimously to recommend ITL (inexpedient to legislate) status for this bill. Nineteen of the 21 members were present, with a final vote in favor of ITL: “Yea” – 19 votes; “Nay” – 0 votes; with 2 not voting. You can view the vote in the video below (48:35 – 52:10.)
In October of 2021, nine peaceful people were arrested at a well-attended executive council meeting. It started when armed state goons approached activists Frank “Footloose” Staples and Terese Grinnell and requested they to follow them to a partitioned area in the back of the room. Once out of sight of the packed audience, the thugs arrested Footloose and Terese, causing them to verbally announce what was happening. Prior to being asked to walk out, the two were sitting in the audience quietly, so they are still unsure regarding why they were arrested in the first place, as they didn’t make any noise prior to the arrest. So far, the court process has yet to clarify the situation.
It’s also worth noting that there is an unconstitutional “Supreme Court” of NH order in place prohibiting recording in all parts of state courthouses except the courtrooms themselves. Those restrictions were put in place because of Keene activists recording over a decade ago and haven’t been meaningfully challenged ever since. Kudos to New Hampshire native Footloose for standing up for the right to record and the right to transparency. It was nice to see him back down the armed goon AND he did it while on bail conditions for his previous ridiculous victimless arrests.
Stay tuned here to Free Keene for the latest on his saga.
In the most pleasantly surprising news of the year, the Keene Sentinel has broken a story about Keene Police lieutenant Jason Short advocating mass civil disobedience regarding the city’s recently passed mask mandate. Though the Sentinel piece appears to want to shock readers with Short’s opinions, those of us who have engaged with him over more than a decade of peaceful civil disobedience activism are proud to see his evolution.
The Sentinel reveals that Short posted the following to his facebook account:
“Remember the bad guys in movies don’t know they are bad, they think they are doing the ‘right thing’ for the benefit of society. It is only when the ‘good guy’ stands up to them that they realize they are wrong. Citizens need to stand up and stop simply complying to this nonsense mandates.”
The rest of the Sentinel piece is designed to gin up outrage that a police officer dared to openly speak against the city gang’s precious mask ordinance. However, surprisingly, Keene Police chief Steven Russo actually covered for Short rather than throwing him under the bus, explaining to the reporter that it’s Short’s right to express himself as Short doesn’t lose the right to free speech just because he works for the state. Russo claims, “Lt. Short will enforce the Ordinance consistent with my guidance and in the same spirit as all of our Officers regardless of his personal feelings”, but doesn’t say what his “guidance” is. There is a good chance Russo’s “guidance” is to encourage Keene police to use discretion regarding enforcing the ordinance.
Many people, including those railing against Short online for expressing independent thoughts, simply do not understand that all police officers have discretion. Discretion is the ability for each officer to decide whether to enforce any given statute or ordinance, with few exceptions. As I understand it, generally, police officers are only obligated to enforce certain violent felonies. So, even if Russo tells Short to enforce the mask mandate, Short can still use his discretion and the worst than can be done to him is he’d likely get a stern talking-to or perhaps reassigned to the night shift.
Keene Police Officer Jason Short, Civil Disobedience Advocate
City mob boss Elizabeth Dragon was even approached by Sentinel reporter Caleb Symons for comment on whether Short could be disciplined, but she wisely refused to return his calls, as she probably doesn’t want to admit there’s nothing the city council can do if the police refuse to enforce their ordinance. From what I understand, Short isn’t the only police officer who feels as he does.
A decade ago, Short was the antagonist during Derrick J Freeman’s “Victimless Crime Spree“, arresting Free Keene blogger Derrick J in Central Square for open possession of cannabis. In 2014, as the DEA was raiding then-Main Street business Phat Stuff, Keene police were running cover for them and I confronted Short outside the business about his role in the situation. During the conversation, I asked him how he feels about a productive downtown business being destroyed by the DEA, and he told me, “what I feel don’t matter”. I responded that it does matter, which is why I asked him for his opinion.
Now, more than half a decade later, Short appears to have changed his tune, and for the better. He’s not only expressing his opinion about bad law publicly, he’s also taking the correct position – that the mask mandate is evil and needs to be disobeyed. That’s because good people disobey bad laws and good cops refuse to enforce them.
If Jason Short can go from bad guy to good guy, maybe there is hope. Whether or not activists like Derrick J have had a positive influence on Short over the years, kudos to Short for taking a stand.
Pelletier has been to every meeting this year and was witness to Bossi’s arrest in May. He and his wife Jessica have a child in the government school district and are not happy about the mask mandate being forced on the school kids. In an exclusive interview for Free Keene, Pelletier told me that at school board meetings, they even have a separate, segregated entrance for maskless people, who are then told they must sit in a segregated area of the auditorium.
Dr. Kimberly Farah, local sociopath and head of Timberlane School Board
The Pelletiers and some other freedom-loving parents refused to enter via the “separate but equal” doors and eventually were allowed in the front door, and then rather than sit at the “back of the bus” – as one woman referred to the segregated zone – the Pelletiers sat quietly in the main seating section, where no one was seated anywhere nearby.
Within moments of the start of the meeting, the chairman of the school board, Dr. Kimberly Farah, issued a threat to the audience, saying that anyone who in unmasked and not seated in the segregated section will be charged with “criminal trespass”, which is a misdemeanor that could carry up to one year in jail. After issuing the board’s threats, Farah said, “We sincerely hope to avoid taking the above actions during our board meetings, as we believe that such a decision would not serve the district.” Seconds later, board member Sheila Lowes requested the meeting be halted, “until people are complying with what we are stating”. Farah then “asks” that unmasked people move to the segregated area. Fifteen seconds later, she “asks” again, as no one had apparently moved.
Clearly she wasn’t just asking, as nine seconds later, she says to the mask-free people that she is going to order them to leave the premises, and tells the police present that she wants their assistance removing unmasked people as she “considers those to be in criminal trespass”. The two police make a beeline for the Pelletiers, focusing on Nolan. The masked, armed men continue to use terms like “asking” and “guidelines”, though obviously these are not simply kind requests. One officer attempts to get Pelletier to claim he doesn’t want to follow the “guidelines” before turning back to Farah and asking if she wants Pelletier criminally trespassed. She affirms and moments later the officers tell him if he doesn’t leave on his own, he’ll be charged with resisting arrest in addition to criminal trespass. Beating a resisting arrest charge is quite difficult, so Pelletier understandably complied with the threatening gang members.
LPNH Chair Nolan Pelletier Arrested at Timberlane School Board Meeting
Strangely, Pelletier told me the officers later claimed that he was never under arrest despite being handcuffed outside, put into a cruiser, and transported to the police station for booking before being released on “personal recognizance” bail. His arraignment is set for November 29th, 8am at Salem District Court.
Also, none of the other maskless people in the main seating area were charged, including Jessica Pelletier, who was seated right next to Nolan and left sitting there by police when they removed him. Others in the segregated section spoke out, including a man who told the school board they are slimeballs who belong in Massachusetts. He promised they would be publicly shamed and told them that they are disgusting. I hope he is right. People like these scum need to be shamed so much they quit their jobs and move out of New Hampshire. Eventually the government schools need to be ended entirely, but for now the best choice for freedom-loving parents is to get their kids out of the government schools, as soon as possible.
Stay tuned here to Free Keene for the latest on the sociopathic school board and the Pelletier case as it develops.