We Will Not Comply!: Comrade Received Grand Jury Subpoena in Washington DC

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It’s Going Down has received the following statement and press release about a comrade facing a grand jury subpoena in Washington DC. There will also be a protest rally against the grand jury in DC tomorrow at 8:30 AM.

WE RESIST GRAND JURIES
An anarchist/antifascist statement
Monday, September 10, 2018

A group of Washington DC anarchists and antifascists issues the following statement:

We will not be intimidated by the state. We will not comply with grand juries.

On Wednesday, September 5, 2018, a subpoena to a grand jury was issued to one of our comrades. Our comrade was asked to report to a DC courthouse on Tuesday, September 11, 2018. That subpoena asked for footage taken by a camera held by the comrade in the streets of Washington DC on August 12, 2018, a day when the streets were full of thousands of antifascist and anti-racist activists opposing a small white supremacist group. This trusted comrade is an independent journalist who often films protests in the city, and was doing so on August 12, 2018.

Local anarchists and antifascists will convene to make a statement against grand juries at 8:30 AM, Tuesday, September 11, 2018, at the courthouse at 500 Indiana Ave NW, Washington DC. All are invited to join us to resist state repression.

We do not know why this individual’s footage is being subpoenaed (though we may have a few theories). But anarchists and antifascists in the United States have taken a longstanding, principled position of opposing grand juries. Our comrade does not intend to report for questioning or turn over any footage. The comrade does so at risk of bodily safety: The state can imprison people for an indefinite period of time for resisting a grand jury subpoena. We will not submit.

This grand jury is a true witch hunt. Grand juries are a way to summon everyday people into a court setting without the person actually knowing what prosecutors or investigators are looking to charge someone with. It is a way to bring someone into questioning against their will, without that person knowing who is being suspected of doing what.

In these dangerous, increasingly fascist times, we must resist the state’s movements toward authoritarianism. The grand jury process is a heavy-handed, authoritarian means of controlling and terrifying a population. Bringing people in for questioning and seizing people’s footage as evidence, without anyone knowing why the state is doing so, is the kind of behavior we would expect from a fascist state. We cannot accept this behavior, nor allow the state to strong-arm us into a place of fear. We resist.

This statement was created via a collaborative process within a group of anarchist/antifascist activists who have formed an ad hoc team to respond to this grand jury subpoena.


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