Interview with J20 Defendants: 188 Still Face Decades In Prison For Trump Inauguration Protest


Washington, DC – Despite the clear rejection of their first case by a jury last month, the US Attorney’s Office is continuing to seek multiple felony convictions for nearly every person swept up in a mass arrest at the ‘antifascist and anticapitalist march’ during Trump’s inauguration on January 20, 2017.

Today we’ll be live speaking with a J20 defendant, Olivia, and a supporter, Naila, about where the case stands now, after the first six defendants have been acquitted and the next trial groups have court dates approaching.

Through a superseding indictment brought in early 2017, the US government contends that every person present was responsible for the few instances of property damage that occurred – because they were wearing black, “moving with the group,” and participating in protest chants. The current set of charges, 6 felonies (incitement to riot and 5 felony property destruction charges) and 2 misdemeanors (engaging in riot and conspiracy to riot) carries a potential sentence of 61 years in prison.

#DefendJ20 Defendant Olivia and Supporter Naila Discuss Ongoing Trials

#DefendJ20 Defendant Olivia and Supporter Naila Discuss Ongoing Trials: Unicorn Riot interviews Naila and Olivia to get an update on the ongoing J20 trials. We interviewed Olivia once before, in June 2017 our extensive coverage of the J20 trials on our website…/jury-finds-six…/Support for Unicorn Riot is provided by our viewers. Please consider becoming a monthly micro-donation supporter

Posted by Unicorn Riot on Friday, January 12, 2018

Defense lawyers for the second trial group submitted a motion in December asking the judge to throw out the superseding indictment, alleging that Detective Greggory Pemberton deliberately gave false testimony to the grand jury.

We first spoke with Olivia about the case last summer in Chicago, when all defendants were still facing over 80 years in prison.

More recently, while waiting for the verdict in the first J20 trial in December, we sat down for an extended interview with Betty Rothstein and Judge Ortiz of Defend J20 Resistance about some of their observations on the case, and what it means to support defendants.

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Unicorn Riot
Unicorn Riot is a volunteer-operated decentralized media collective comprised of multimedia artists and journalists. Born from the Internet in 2015, we operate non-hierarchically, independent of corporate and government funding. Our non-profit media organization currently spans across multiple US cities including Boston, Denver, Minneapolis, and New York City. Unicorn Riot’s purpose is to amplify the voices of people who might otherwise go unheard, and broadcast the stories that might otherwise go untold, as we further understanding of dynamic social struggles. We are committed to producing media that exposes root causes of social conflict and explores sustainable alternatives in today’s globalized world.