I like these guys. Think how much they are costing the idiots who make idiotic decisions in this sparsely populated states. Too many people are in jail for things that simply aren’t crimes, except in the narrow little minds of fascists who have gained control of our courts and legislatures. These protesters were bringing attention to the jailing of a fellow Free Stater who was in jail for child support.
When a car collided with a college student walking in downtown Keene on Sunday evening, a Marlborough police detective had to investigate the incident while N.H. State Police troopers interviewed the victim.
On most evenings, Keene police officers would have handled the accident, which resulted in minor injuries. But they were busy processing a dozen people who were accused of trespassing at the new Cheshire County jail in Keene.
The arrestees – all were charged with trespassing and one was charged additionally with possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia – have ties to the Free State Project and one of its offshoot groups, Free Keene.
The Free State Project is an effort to persuade 20,000 people to move to New Hampshire and participate in activism or run for political office. Project members are particularly active in Keene.
The Free Keene website states that the “Trespassive Twelve” circled the jail building several times, attracting the attention of some inmates, and police. “No Trespassing” signs are posted on the property.
Ian “Freeman” Bernard, 29, a Keene resident who was among the protesters, said in a phone interview Tuesday that the group was rallying for N.H. Free Press publisher Russell Kanning. Kanning is jailed for nonpayment of child support.
Bernard added that he and the other protesters also wanted to “raise the spirits of other men and women in prison there.”
The gathering drew a rather large police response: the Keene Police Department sent an entire shift, four officers and a supervisor, to the jail. Marlborough police sent Detective Steven E. LaMears. Swanzey police sent an officer. The N.H. State Police sent two troopers. Finally, three corrections officers from the jail joined the group.