Dismissed: Judge Dismisses Charges Against Two Activist Journalists

“I don’t want people to think, ‘You went before a judge, the judge was fair, the charges were dismissed, everything’s cool.’ It’s not cool.”

By John Malkin, Santa Cruz Good Times

Two more of the “Santa Cruz 11” have had all charges against them dismissed. During a half-hour hearing on Monday, May 14, Santa Cruz Superior Court Judge Paul Burdick dismissed the charges of trespassing, vandalism and conspiracy against Bradley Stuart Allen and Alex Darocy, which stemmed from their alleged involvement in the November 2011 occupation of a vacant downtown bank building.

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Banners on Highway 1 in Support of the Santa Cruz 11

On Tuesday, May 15th and Friday, May 18th, supporters of the Santa Cruz Eleven held banners above the slow-moving southbound traffic on Highway 1 in Santa Cruz.

On Tuesday, May 15th, the day after all charges were dismissed against Indybay photojournalists Alex Darocy and Bradley Stuart Allen, supporters of the Santa Cruz Eleven held banners above the slow-moving southbound traffic on Highway 1 in Santa Cruz. The banners say, “Support The Santa Cruz Eleven” and “Drop All Charges Now!”

On Friday, May 18th, supporters of the Santa Cruz Eleven held banners on the Soquel Avenue bridge, to be seen by passing drivers on Highway 1, in support of the eleven people charged in association with the 2011 occupation of a vacant bank building at 75 River Street in Santa Cruz. So far six of the eleven defendants have had charges against them dismissed by Santa Cruz judge Paul Burdick, and the remaining five are still in the middle of pre-trial hearings.

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California Judge Dismisses Felony Charges Against Photojournalists

The Santa Cruz District Attorney’s Office tried to paint them as activists while ensuring Thaler, the Santa Cruz Sentinel photographer, was there as a bona fide journalist. Fortunately, Santa Cruz County Superior Court Judge Paul Burdick saw through that flimsy argument and dismissed all charges against Allen and Darocy.

By Carlos Miller, Photography is Not a Crime

On November 30, during the height of the Occupy movement, more than 100 activists marched down the street in Santa Cruz, one of hundreds of demonstrations taking place throughout the country at the time.

At one point, the activists entered an abandoned Wells Fargo – directly across the street from an active Wells Fargo branch – and began a three-day occupation, hoping to turn it into a community center in this Northern California city.

Covering the demonstration were photojournalists Bradley Stuart Allen and Alex Darocy of the Indybay Collective, a coalition of independent journalists in the Bay Area.

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Watsonville Supports the Santa Cruz Eleven: Press Conference, March and Rally

On May 4th, over a hundred people gathered at the Santa Cruz Courthouse for a press conference, march, and rally organized by the Watsonville Brown Berets to demand District Attorney Bob Lee drop the charges against the Santa Cruz Eleven.

Photos by Pocho-one Fotography

On May 4th, over a hundred people gathered at the Santa Cruz Courthouse for a press conference, march, and rally organized by the Watsonville Brown Berets to demand District Attorney Bob Lee drop the charges against the Santa Cruz Eleven — local community members who have been charged with an unprecedented variety of offenses arising from their alleged involvement with the occupation of a long-time vacant bank building at 75 River Street late last fall. The Santa Cruz Eleven are either journalists and/or activists supportive of the Occupy movement.

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Rally for Santa Cruz 11

Participants held signs bearing slogans like “Journalism is not a crime”

by City on a Hill Press, A Student-Run Newspaper at UCSC.
Written by William Glad, David Orozco and KellyAnn Kelso.
Illustration by Christine Hipp.

This Week in News

On May 4, concerned community members gathered for a rally at the courthouse and marched downtown to show support for the Santa Cruz 11 — the majority of them journalists — who were arrested in an Occupy demonstration at 75 River St. last fall.

The rally began at the courthouse and featured speakers who brought the crowd up to speed on unfolding judicial proceedings. About a hundred people then marched down Water Street, turned left onto Pacific Avenue and walked back to the courthouse the way they came. The rally culminated with a few more speakers and a Wells Fargo-shaped piñata.

Participants held signs bearing slogans like “Journalism is not a crime,” and chanted “What do we want?” “Drop the charges!” “When do we want it?” “Now!”

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