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Prosecutor Throwing the Book at Will Parrish, Trial on Aug. 5th

by EF!Humboldt ~ July 11th, 2013. Filed under: Tree-sits.

Will_court

Update 7/13/13 3:43pm:

Repost from Save Our Little Lake Valley- Will demanded a jury trial, and District Attorney David Eyster responded by throwing the book at him. Will is being charged with 16 misdemeanors. His maximum jail sentence is eight years.

Visit their website to see ways to help Will and SOLLV.

Update 7/12/13 11:30 am:

Joined by a crowd of two dozen supporters, Little Lake Valley Defender Will Parrish attended his arraignment this morning at the Mendocino County. Local attorney Omar Figueroa is now representing him pro-bono and doing an excellent job.

The counties head prosecutor had charged Will with three identical infractions, meaning Will would be ineligible for a jury trial where he could argue his case to other members of the public. Supporters suspect this move was aimed to exclude such a trial. Will intends to take the case to jury and was seeking for the charges to be elevated to misdemeanors in order for that to be possible.

The judge stated that he wasn’t aware of any statutes allowing this to occur, but defense attorney Omar Figueroa was ready with case law supporting Will’s right to have a jury trial.

The prosecutor grumbled about it being strange that a defendant should have this right, and said that he had already found charges that would be mutually agreeable. Then he stated that he would be filing different charges now that they need to be misdemeanors. He had initially argued against charging Will with misdemeanors, saying that the original charges could be either infractions or misdemeanors but that he’d chosen infractions.

Will’s Court Schedule:

July 24th, Pre-trial conference

Aug 1st, “Motion in limine”

Aug 5th, Jury trial begins at 9:00 am

Tomorrow at 8:00 am, supporters will be rallying for Will outside the Mendocino County courthouse, just before his next hearing. He is being charged with three identical infractions related to trespassing after spending 12 days high up on a machine used to install wick drains into wetlands for highway construction. The other charges are believed to be linked to previous arrests during protests of the Willits bypass.

Meanwhile, work continues on the bypass as workers strip topsoil from a wetland near the tree-sit. Tree-sitters reported that in the middle of the night, dump truck after dump truck left the site full of soil. Nearby, wick drains are still being installed and farther off, pile drivers ram huge rods down into the ground for new bridges.

Warbler and Will are featured in a new story from TUC radio.

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