KINDERHOOK — Nine protesters who authorities placed under arrest after they failed to leave U.S. Rep. John Faso’s office in December were arraigned in Kinderhook Village Court on Monday.
The protesters, who call themselves the “Clean DREAM Faso 9,” appeared before Kinderhook Village Justice David Dellehunt in court following their Dec. 18, 2017 arrests.
The protesters pleaded not guilty on Monday to charges ranging from violating the local building occupancy code, a violation, and obstruction of governmental administration, a class A misdemeanor.
The nine were arrested while staging a sit-in inside the Republican congressman’s Kinderhook office on 2 Hudson St.
The group is made up of constituents from Faso’s 19th district, including members of Columbia County Sanctuary Movement, Ulster Immigrant Defense Network, ICE-Free Capital District, Showing Up for Racial Justice Hudson, Showing Up for Racial Justice Ulster, Tin Horn Uprising and others.
Several 19th Congressional District residents showed up at the court appearance to give their support to the protesters Monday.
With the Feb. 8 deadline for a new spending bill looming, the nine used their court appearance to call on Faso and U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., to pass a clean DREAM Act and a legislative solution for Temporary Protected Status recipients.
“Approximately 40 people were here in total to say we are here to say we are going to continue to fight for a clean Dream (Act),” Bryan MacCormack, one of the nine arrested, said after the arraignment. “We are going to continue to call on Rep. Faso and Sen. Schumer to support a clean Dream Act. The court room has now become yet another place where public opinion can be heard and discussed.”
A trial is scheduled for March 5.
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