Equality Nine Have Latest Day in Court October 17

sdindymedia

Charles Nelson and Mark Gabrish Conlan report: The “Equality Nine” — Michael Anderson, Brian Baumgardner, Sean Bohac, Felicity Bradley, Kelsey Hoffman, Mike Kennedy, Zakiya Khabir, Chuck Stemke, and Cecile Veillard, members of the San Diego Alliance for Marriage Equality (S.A.M.E.) who were arrested August 19, 2010 while staging a demonstration for same-sex marriage rights at the San Diego County Clerk’s office — had their latest court hearing Monday, October 17 at the San Diego County Courthouse downtown.

The city attorney is refusing to drop the charges, but is offering a plea bargain that would require any of the Nine who accepted it to plead guilty to violating California Penal Code section 415, which says that “any person who maliciously and willfully disturbs another person by loud and unreasonable noise” can be punished by up to 90 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $400.

The plea deal the prosecutor offered would involve a “waiver of time” — apparently meaning a suspended jail sentence — and would require them to do eight hours of community service unrelated to marriage equality. Once anyone who accepted the deal presented documentation that they performed the community service, they would be allowed to “withdraw the plea” and end the case with no criminal record against them. The prosecutor made the offer to the defendants as individuals and gave them until October 28 to decide. --Read More--