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Jacksonville Hempfest marred by police violence

 
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Ferre
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Joined: 14 Apr 2003
Posts: 2550
Location: Amsterdam

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2003 4:46 pm    Post subject: Jacksonville Hempfest marred by police violence Reply with quote

Quote:
Date: Sun, 01 Jun 2003 13:49:08 -0700
From: "D. Paul Stanford" stanford@crrh.org
Subject: 001 FL: Jacksonville Hempfest marred by police violence

The sixth annual Jacksonville Hempfest occured on May 31st, 2003 on the
shores of the Atlantic Ocean in Jacksonville Beach, Florida.

After a delay of more than 2 and a half hours caused by the city not
allowing our sound company access to the stage, through what they claim is
lack of communication between city officials, The event began around 2PM.
With 6 bands and acts from around the county.

Interspersed with the bands were speakers, George Mc Mahon, Fat Freddy,
Kevin Aplin, Jodi James of Florida CAN, Heath Wintz of SSDP, and Doug
Klippel of Libertarian Party and Ken Hurley of the ACLU.

The event was well received by estimated 10,000 people who came and went
throughout the day.
As many as 1-2 thousand people were present at any one time.

Although the 6th Annual Jacksonville Hempfest was the best ever, it was
laced with bigotry not seen since the civil rights movement. Undercover
police officers were mingling in the crowd all day long, as many as 10 - 15
officers stood out like a sore thumb amongst the rest of the crowd which
appeared to be having fun and receiving the message that there is an
alternative to the drug war.
On top of the 4-8 uniformed officers present for the entire event.

Then around 4:15 PM, Officers approached Ronnie Smith, aka Marijuana Man
Roland A Duby
and pressured him to look inside his Bugler tobacco pack. Ronnie at first
refused this baseless invasion of his privacy and then changed his stance
and asked for a moment to consider his decision. Officers then advised
Roland, he could consider on the way to the Jail. They instantly began
manhandling and Brutally physically abusing Mr. Smith without ever
informing him that he was under arrest.

Roland has been charged with a Felony count of Resisting arrest with
violence. Even though it was Jacksonville Beach Police Undercover Narc
officer Jerry Dearing, wearing two earings a bald head, gold chain and gold
watch and a tasmanian devil tattoo with the word BOOG beneath it who
delivered the pepper spray in a crowd of onlookers with winds gusting to
over 30 miles per hour at the time.

Even though Smith was already restrained by approximately 5 officers. They
still brought him to the ground with brutal force and violence, enough to
send Smith to the hospital for the night.
Smith appeared at his bond hearing this morning using crutches.

After this Uniformed officers were increased to as many as 8 and undercover
numbered a dozen or more. The undercover officers followed, intimidated and
harassed festival speakers and organizers throughout the day.


Even though the festival was delayed in beginning, the schedule was mostly
on track give or take 15 mintues after 5PM. At the stroke of 8pm, Police
cut off our sound, denying the final act the end of their last song, and
denying a chance for closing statements.

When asked the police responded that we could have shown them courtesy
while they were handling a situation (referring to the beating of Ronnie
Smith).

SO be it, once again the Jacksonville Hempfest will be tied up in more
controversial litigation.
Proving the dire need of this region for serious legal and free speech
assistance.

Thank you

Scott Bledsoe
President, Jaxcan, Inc.


PIGS! younuts vomito police
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Drrock
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Joined: 15 May 2003
Posts: 35
Location: SW USA

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2003 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is sad, that the police feel obligated to harrass people for speaking their mind. Of course this post is a good example of why violence on our part will not solve the situation, as I staded in another post, This is what the feds are hoping for,IMO, because if we started responding with violence we would be playing right into there strategy, and giving them more fuel for their fire.
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