Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Breaking news

We've just received word that our friend and fellow activist Joel Rosenberg has been arrested by the Hennepin County, Minnesota Sheriff's Office on a felony warrant, signed by Judge Janet Poston, over his lawful carry of a handgun into Minneapolis City Hall on November 5 of this year (details here, video here)  as well as contempt of court for supposedly defying a judicial order banning carry in Hennepin County courthouses despite his plainly giving advance written notice to Sheriff Rich Stanek as required by law (actually it's wasn't required, since City Hall is not a courthouse and as such does not have security measures in place, which is also why Joel isn't in contempt of court, since a judge can no more designate a run-of-the-mill office building a courthouse than he or she can designate a pickle a hammer).

Joel had been on his way to another meeting with Minneapolis police to obtain some documents pursuant to FOIA requests made by him.  That's presumably when he was taken into custody.

Those are the facts as we know them at this time.  Now our speculation (and the following is our opinion only):

This is nothing more than the malicious prosecution of a man (who happens to be a 56-year-old hypertensive diabetic, by the way) who is rightly taking on the Minneapolis Police Department over (1)  the malicious arrest and recharging by the city attorney, even after the charges have already been already dropped once, of Joel's wife on bogus domestic assault charges over nothing more than her disciplining her daughter in public (the daughter herself doesn't allege abuse), and (2)  Joel's filing of criminal assault charges against Minneapolis Police Spokesman William Palmer for forcibly disarming him when he showed up legally armed at Chief Tim Dolan's office to pick up documents in person that Palmer illegally tried to charge Joel money for, then refused to send as required by the Minnesota Data Practices Act, forcing Joel to show up in person to obtain them.  If what Joel did was such an illegal act then why wasn't he arrested right there and then?  Inquiring minds want to know, as the old saying goes.

More details as they come in, including an upcoming statement from Joel's wife.

UPDATE:  The official place for news and updates about this incident is here.


Anonymous said...

Joel is a good and brave man, but you may wantto check your source about the details of the arrest. Public documents do not reflect the details in your report. Keep slogging!

Anonymous said...

His daughter is the witness in the second filing. Joel has decided to fight City Hall. He is going find out that old adage about such endeavors is true.

DJMoore said...

Billy Beck has often said that the liberty movement needs people who will practice peaceful civil disobedience, even at the cost of their personal liberty.

(My wording; I make no claim to put words in Beck's mouth, but I think I have the sentiment right.)

Looks like Joel just stepped up, and good on him.

I too wish him well.

Bike Bubba said...

Anon, if indeed the MPD is taking cheap shots, exactly why would we expect their documents to resemble reality?

Watched the video, I know the law, Minneapolis PD has just agreed to pay Joel's retirement costs, more or less. This is malicious prosecution, and he'll be able to prove it.

Ken Hood said...

My prayers for Joel. He and others who push the boundaries of liberty are the reason we have liberty.

I agree with Bike Bubba... Joel might just retire on this one, but the process will not be fun. God Bless guys like Joel who stand up.

We will follow this closely and be happy to be a part of (peaceful) protest should it come to that. And all you watching eyes in the Hennepin County Government Center who are reading this... I said "peaceful." Joel has a huge following of peaceful, law abiding citizens who will be none to happy to hear about this.

Towerclimber said...

Nice. I see payday for this guy, if they don't decide to make him slip and fall down the stairs or something.
What do you call a government that doesn't follow it's own laws??
Also, if they don't follow these laws, what onus does their citizens have to follow them?

DJMoore said...

My layman's sense is that this should be a slam-dunk for Joel -- except for the courts to be hostile to the law in question, and the judge to be sympathetic to the judge who ordered the sign put up.

I'm not looking to see Joel get off without an expensive legal fight. Even then, he could still end up like that guy in New Jersey, in the slammer for seven years because the judge wouldn't let the jury see the exemptions in the law.

The other side does not play fair.

David III said...

If the Courts and Judges are not playing by the rules, then why should we? Why not publish (on the net) this judges home address?

Towerclimber said...

I don't agree with that David.

I believe that as long as we have a means of redress (legal) then we have an avenue that doesn't require or imply violence.

Justthisguy said...

See, this is a good example of how Hitler was wrong and we need Jews in the world. Sometimes just being an intelligent argumentative smartass is the only way to get right things done.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if this will benefit him and his family or just bankrupt them?