19 Occupy Philly Protesters Arrested In Police Raid Going to Trial
Nearly three dozen Occupy Philly protesters arrested in last Wednesday’s early morning police eviction raid made their first appearance in court this morning. Occupiers have been charged with conspiracy, failure to disperse, and obstructing a highway. They face up to five years in prison and a $12,500 fine.
Lined up in front of Judge Felice R. Stack in Room 403 of the Criminal Justice Center on 13th and Filbert streets, all the Occupiers were given the option to avoid trial and enroll in the Accelerated Misdemeanor Program. Nineteen protesters chose to waive that offer and go to trial. A date has been set for Jan. 12.
Fourteen protesters accepted the offer and were sentenced to 12 hours of community service—to be completed by Jan. 10—and a $199.50 fine.
Afterward, Penn professor Toorjo “T.J.” Ghose—who detailed his arrest to PW last week and is among the 19 going to trial next month—said he’s “prepared to take this all the way,” and expects to be fully cleared of the charges.