OWS Activist Cecily McMillan Found Not Guilty of Interfering with Arrest in Union Square Subway

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Photo by Anna Merlan
McMillan and her attorney Martin Stolar await a verdict on October 10
A jury has found former Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan not guilty of interfering with an arrest in a Union Square subway station. McMillan was charged with obstruction of governmental administration on December 7, 2013, when two police officers said she interfered with their investigation of two people they suspected of turnstile-jumping. McMillan, who faced up to a year in jail on the charges, hugged her attorney, Martin Stolar, when the verdict was read, then yelled "thank you!" at the jury as they departed.

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OWS Activist Cecily McMillan Goes to Trial Again, Accused of Interfering With an Arrest

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Photo by Anna Merlan
McMillan pictured with her attorney, Martin Stolar, earlier this year.
Former Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan, who was previously convicted of assaulting a police officer during a 2012 protest, returned to a much smaller courtroom this week. This time she's accused of a misdemeanor, interfering with two police officers as they tried to question a couple suspected of turnstile-jumping in the Union Square subway station in December. She faces a maximum of a year in jail. During pre-trial arguments yesterday, McMillan's attorney argued that while McMillan tried to speak to the couple as they were being questioned, telling them not to talk to the police officers, she hadn't actually prevented the arrest from taking place. The judge, Anthony Ferrara, wasn't so sure.

"There's a line between what's free speech and what's not," he told attorney Martin Stolar. "And this case presents it, frankly."

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'Flood Wall Street,' Massive Sit-In, Planned for September 22

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Image via Facebook
A flyer being circulated for the event.
Happy third birthday, Occupy Wall Street. This time last year, some former Occupiers embarked on a small-scale, nostalgic march through the Financial District -- one that, for a change, ended in zero arrests. But this year, many of their minds are on next week, when a massive civil-disobedience action is planned for the steps of the New York Stock Exchange. "Flood Wall Street" is being billed as a sit-in and blockade to "shut down the institutions that are profiting from the climate crisis." Blue-clad protesters are expected to meet in Battery Park and then descend on the Financial District sometime on September 22; people affiliated with the event have told us to expect mass arrests.

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New York Post Reporter to Occupy Activist Cecily McMillan: "You Look Fabulous! But You Should Eat More."

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via nypost.com
The latest installment of the New York Post's Cecily McMillan fashion watch.
Occupy Wall Street activist and New School graduate student Cecily McMillan was back in Manhattan criminal court Thursday morning, just weeks after her release from Rikers Island, where she served two months after being convicted of assaulting a police officer. The 25-year-old McMillan still faces another criminal charge, this one a misdemeanor, for obstruction of governmental administration. After a brief hearing, McMillan and her attorney, Martin Stolar, left the courthouse trailed by the usual press scrum, who immediately drilled down on the real story: McMillan's physical appearance.


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Cecily McMillan, Fresh out of Rikers Island: "The 99% Is Stronger Than Ever"

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Photo by Anna Merlan
McMillan reads her statement in front of the Rikers entrance.
At 5 o'clock this morning, graduate student and Occupy Wall Street protester Cecily McMillan was awakened by a guard in her bunk at Rikers, where she's spent a little more than two months after being convicted of assault on a police officer. McMillan had expected to be released today, but she anticipated going through the usual procedure: visiting the social services office around 7:30 a.m. with a group of other women also being let out that day, receiving her property back, and meeting her friends at the gates of the jail.

Instead, McMillan says she was taken to an unmarked van by a cadre of police officers.

"I don't want to go with you," she later told her friend Lucy Parks she said to them. "You're not telling me where you're taking me." She feared she was being set up.

Eventually, an officer told her she was being released. She was taken to the Queensboro Plaza, where she says she was "dumped" unceremoniously, her arms full of her property. She had no keys, money, or phone. The officers left her with a Metro Card and drove away.

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Occupy Protester Cecily McMillan on Rikers: "In Some Ways, I'm Treated Better Than Anyone Else In Here, Which is Horrifying"

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Photo by Anna Merlan
McMillan with her lead attorney, Martin Stolar, during her trial.
After serving a little less than two months in jail, Occupy Wall Street protester and graduate student Cecily McMillan will be released from Rikers Island on Wednesday, July 2. As you might recall, the 25-year-old was found guilty in May of assaulting a police officer during a 2012 protest. She was sentenced to 90 days in jail and five years probation, with time off for the good behavior and time served. It seems safe to say that both McMillan and the city's Department of Correction will be happy to see her off the island, where, true to form, she's been protesting and organizing almost since the moment she arrived.

Rikers has been in an uproar lately, after two officers and 20 inmates were arrested as part of a corruption sweep. But none of them were in the Rose M. Singer Center, the jail unit where women are kept. McMillan and her fellow inmates didn't know about the arrests until relatively recently. The regular paper for the inmates is the Daily News; when they ran a cover story about the arrests last week, the paper arrived with the front cover torn off.

In a recent phone call, McMillan said her time at Rikers has been curious, a mix of special treatment that no other inmates receive and weird restrictions that seem tailor-made just for her.

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Nine of 12 Jurors Who Convicted Occupy Protestor Cecily McMillian Ask Judge to Go Easy on Her

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Photo by C.S. Muncy
McMillan's supporters hold up signs in her honor at Liberty Plaza after her conviction.
On Monday, Occupy Wall Street protester and New School graduate student Cecily McMillan was convicted of assaulting police officer Grantley Bovell during a demonstration on March 17, 2012, a felony that carries a maximum of seven years in prison. There's been widespread shock and outrage over that verdict, and the lengthy prison time McMillan could do, particularly in light of the fact that she maintains that the incident began when Bovell grabbed her breast from behind, causing her to involuntarily elbow him in the face.

Apparently, the jury in the McMillan case is just as shocked as everyone else. In a letter dated May 6, nine of them wrote to Judge Ronald Zweibel, the judge who heard the case and will sentence McMillan on May 19, asking him to be lenient. The letter reads, in part: "It serves no purpose to Cecily or to society to incarcerate her for any amount of time."

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Occupy Champion Melissa Mark-Viverito Sported $5,300 Rings to the $25,000 per Ticket Met Gala


Melissa Mark-Viverito at the Met gala Monday night.

Remember November 2011, when City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito was arrested, along with 98 protestors, for blocking the Brooklyn Bridge while chanting "We are the 99 percent?"

Well, times have changed. On Monday -- the same day protestors were gathering in Zuccotti Park to rail against the assault conviction of Occupy protester Cecily McMillan -- Mark-Viverito was uptown at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, rubbing elbows with the .001%, at the Met Institute Costume gala.

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Cecily McMillan Supporters Rally and Grieve Following Guilty Verdict

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Photo by C.S. Muncy
McMillan's supporters held up signs in her honor at Liberty Plaza last night.
Yesterday, a jury found graduate student and Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan guilty of assault on a police officer. As we wrote, the scene in the courthouse at 100 Centre Street quickly grew chaotic, with her supporters shouting about the injustice of the verdict and court security officers with plastic handcuffs shouting back.

Last night, McMillan's supporters gathered for a quieter rally at Liberty Plaza, formerly known as Zuccotti Park, once the scene of the OWS encampment.

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Occupy Wall Street Activist Cecily McMillan Found Guilty of Assault on Police Officer

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McMillan talks with one of her lawyers, Martin Stolar.

Update, 3:08 p.m.:
A jury has found Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan guilty of assault on a police officer. Her sentencing will be May 19. She was remanded into custody, pending sentencing. Judge Ronald Zweibel refused to let her stay free on bail. A full update can be found on page three.

The Voice's Anna Merlan posted this photo of the police presence:

Original story below.

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