Where it’s happening in Manchester

Veterans Park, right in downtown Manchester, or Victory Park, near the N.H. Institute of Art.

Update on Jim Johnson and Big Mike

Both Jim Johnson and Big Mike were arraigned today in Nashua. Big Mike was given cash-only bail, and refuses to pay anything to the government, so he is still being held at the Hillsborough County Jail on Valley Street in Manchester; Jim was released on personal recognizance and is now free pending trial.

Big Mike’s trial will be on 2010-05-17 in Nashua District Court. Jim Johnson’s trial will be on 2010-05-24.

Several protests took place in front of the jail in Manchester until Big Mike was released on 2010-05-03.

The Nashua Telegraph has more: “Two more arrested over pot protest.”

Big Mike also arrested for Nasha 4:20 rally

“Big Mike” has now been arrested on “disorderly conduct” charges stemming from the Nashua 4:20 rally. Manchester police came to his apartment around 11:45 on Saturday and threatened to kick down the door if he didn’t go with them. He has refused bail, and his arraignment will be at 08:15 on Monday in Nashua District Court, although this information is not confirmed at this point.

The Nashua Police can be contacted at +1.603.594.3500. Nashua PD records all their calls: Therefore there is no expectation of privacy, so you do not have to notify them that you are recording them if you are. The public relations/media officer is Lt. Raymond McDannell.

The District Court is not open on the weekend, but can be contacted at +1.603.880.3333 from 08:00 to 16:00 on Monday through Friday.

After Jim Johnson’s arrest yesterday, it is now apparent they are going after prominent activists who participated in the 4:20 rallies. If you were at the rallies, especially if you interacted with police or acted as an organizer, be sure to have your cameras and Porc411 ready over the next few days in case they come to arrest you next.

UPDATE: As of 2010-04-19, Big Mike has been arraigned and will remain in jail pending trial on 2010-05-17.

Big Mike released from jail

The judge finally acted on the bail motions, and Big Mike was released from jail around 18:00 on Wednesday, 2010-02-03. More coverage at NH-CLOG.

Court filings in Big Mike’s case

On 2010-02-01, activists and friends of Big Mike filed two motions in Manchester District Court in an attempt to have his $5000 cash bail converted to personal recognizance. One motion stated that Mike has identified himself and been processed completely by the jail, which was the stipulation the judge had placed on Mike’s case in order for him to be bailed. The other motion was a request by Mike for a jury trial.

Considering the run-around we had during the arraignment, and dealing with the jail over the past two weeks, this went surprisingly quickly. We arrived at the court around 08:15 and were done within an hour.

We expect that the motions will be taken up and ruled on today; if the judge grants the motion, Mike should be released immediately. Hopefully there will be no need for a hearing, as the motions provide everything the judge required in order to amend bail. We’ll post an update as soon as we find out if Mike has been released.

More coverage of Mike’s legal case can be found at the New Hampshire Courtroom Legal Opposition Group website.

Video of 2010-01-30 protest, call for protest on 2010-02-06

View Miller’s latest video of Rich Paul:

He didn’t have time to edit, but check out the exchange between Rich and the unidentified (but obviously senior, judging by the gray hair), cop starting at 1:55. “You were here last weekend, we’re not going to say it again.”

My favorite is at 3:14 when the cop says the city jail is private property. Priceless!

And then at 5:25 the cop performs the same “simple assault” that landed Big Mike in jail a few weeks ago.

But the gauntlet was thrown down at 5:42. “If you come back next week, you will be arrested.”

Rally every Saturday until Big Mike is free

Big Mike is still in jail, and still completely incommunicado with the outside world. The Manchester crew will continue to hold a protest and 420 rallies, every Saturday, in front of the Valley Street Jail, until they release him. From Renniks, who’s organizing most of the Manchester efforts at this point:—

I think gathering at the jail at 4:00 PM every Saturday is something we should do. I was going to start doing it on my own to begin with. Have a good puff, then a march. I say we bring it to the cops since they wanted to start messing with us.

I’m doing this every Saturday (most likely weather permitting of course, but we’ll see) until he is released. If people want to hold a simultaneous 420 at the jail, who am I to stop them. The activists who plan on doing this are putting themselves at a greater risk because of the proximity to state authoritarians. But who am I to argue? The more the merrier.

Also, Mike’s birthday (the big 36 I believe) is on Tuesday, 2010-03-30. If he is still caged at that point, I am planning on having a big birthday bash for Mike. I figure bring a portable BBQ, burgers, dogs, some cake, balloons, fuck—even some watermelons. It’ll be a blast.

Let’s do this. Every Saturday until Mike is free.

Victory at Victory Park

Almost forty people showed at Victory Park yesterday to have a 420 rally in response to Brian Manning’s and Big Mike’s arrest last Saturday. And just about everyone had a joint or pipe in their mouth, despite an anonymous Porc411 call saying that there would be many cops there to break up the rally.

No cops showed up at the park.

The rally then moved to the Hillsborough County Jail on Valley Street, where Big Mike has been held for a week now, incommunicado. Protestors walked into the jail lobby and asked to speak with Big Mike. Jail officers would not allow him to be seen. After ten minutes or so, back-up was called for, and the congregation took a walk around the jail yelling “Freedom!” at the to of their lungs, while inmates banged on their windows in support.

When the group of protesters made it back to the front, they were greeted by several cops and two guards, and several other police cars were still coming in. [A total of eight or nine police cruisers, one SUV, and either one or two wagons had showed up. This must have been a significant chunk of Manchester’s on-duty police force at the time. —jraxis] After one officer was handed a package of little girl’s panties by Rich Paul, in mocking response to the childish rationale for Big Mike’s arrest, the protestors were ordered to move back onto the sidewalk and off of jail property. Police efforts to then get them off the sidewalk and to “keep moving” ultimately failed, and the cops left before the protesters, which I consider a large win over MPD.

Manchester hasn’t had much for civil disobedience ever before, and the MPD clearly has no idea how to handle it. That first pair of arrests for civil disobedience has sparked a revolution of sorts in Manchester—so I say good luck, Manchester 420 supporters, and keep up the good work.

[CANCELLED] Tilting at the City of Manchester to release Big Mike from jail

Don Quixote de la Shire
anyone who joins him
and onlookers

Tilting at Manchester City Hall, District Court, police station, and jail in order to free pro-freedom activist Big Mike from Valley Street jail.

Sunday, 2010-01-24 12:00

Early start for 420 rallies

Because of the arrests in Manchester this last week, the 420 rallies have been springing up periodically again. Originally, the plan was to start up again on March 20 in Keene, but that hasn’t stopped a few individuals from doing so early. Nearly every time I walk through downtown Keene around 4:20 PM, I can be sure to see one or two people smoking their weed on the common.

Many of us from Keene will be joining Manchester’s 4:20 celebration this coming Saturday, 2010-01-23. Brian Manning cannot go within 100 yards of Veteran’s Park as part of his bail conditions, so the rally will instead be held in Victory Park. I guess you could say we are working our way towards victory!

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