Some of you may recall the story from this past November about Ian Bernard being jailed for not sitting fast enough in a court. Ian served three days and was then released on a 90 day suspended sentence at which time he went back to work as a radio host on Free Talk Live. This week Ian found himself being threatened to be put back to jail. The crime? Reporting news.
Yes, you read that correctly. Ian wrote a story about Andrew Carroll, Andrew being the activist arrested for pot possession in Keene, NH, and even had him as a guest on his radio show to discuss the civil disobedience act. www.freetalklive.com has the audio of the interview here. Soon after airing the radio show the City of Keene, NH presented Ian with a warrant for his arrest saying he violated the agreement of his suspended sentence breaking NH law RSA 626-8.
Here is the specific RSA they claim he is in violation of:
III. A person is an accomplice of another person in the commission of an offense if:
(a) With the purpose of promoting or facilitating the commission of the offense, he solicits such other person in committing it, or aids or agrees or attempts to aid such other person in planning or committing it;
In other words because he exorcized his freedom of speech and freedom of the press he broke the law.
As announced on last night’s Free Talk Live, the Keene city prosecutor, Sgt. Eliezer Rivera has sent me threatening paperwork where he is requesting that Keene District Court force me into a hearing which could result in the suspended sentence I was given being revoked, thereby landing me back in jail for 90 days. Why? Apparently because I sent out Andrew Carroll’s press release in regards to this past Saturday’s marijuana protest, blogged about it, atttended, videotaped it, and because I had Andrew on Saturday night’s Free Talk Live.
Here is the threatening “Motion to Show Cause” from Mr. Rivera in PDF form.
So, because I engaged in freedom of speech, I’m now a criminal? How many others will they target over this? Free Minds TV, the NH Free Press, and NH Capitol Access were also “promoting” the event. What about the other attendees? Are they at risk as well?
Discussing a news event, a planned civil protest, in media outlets has now become a crime in this country.
Amendment I: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Do those words no longer apply?
If Ian is a criminal then I guess I too would be in violation of the law for "promoting" Dave Ridley and his illegal puppet shows or maybe my coverage of Ed Brown's stand against the IRS. If Ian is allowed to be hauled back to jail on the basis of what he has said as part of his work in various media sources then our Constitution is indeed dead.