An­other ar­rest

The Labradorian - - FRONT PAGE - BY EVAN CA­REEN

Melissa Best was re­cently ar­rested while at Muskrat gates.

Melissa Best has been in the me­dia in re­cent months for her work as a spokes­woman for the com­mu­nity of Mud Lake, which was dev­as­tated by flood­ing in the spring. Many have blamed the flood­ing on the Muskrat Falls project, and the cause of the flood­ing is now the sub­ject of a gov­ern­ment in­quiry.

On Aug. 25, Best was ar­rested at the gates of Muskrat Falls, on the same day the last trans­former Nal­cor had been trans­port­ing ar­rived at the site.

“We went up to the gates for sup­port, know­ing this was the final knell,” she told the Labrado­rian. “Know­ing that final trans­former was go­ing through the gates made it real.”

She said she walked across the road from the area where peo­ple are al­lowed to protest to the gates to see who was named on the in­junc­tion posted on the gate.

“On the gates they have a big sign that is the in­junc­tion and it says page 1 of 2,” she said. “There are two copies and they both say page 1 of 2. So, be­ing bold and re­ally pissed off, I asked them to pro­duce the sec­ond page of the in­junc­tion so I could read it all.”

She said she told se­cu­rity they needed to have the sec­ond page there and se­cu­rity told her they would make a call. They then asked her to leave, she said, and she went across the street.

Within five min­utes, she said, the RCMP showed up.

“The most vi­o­lent thing about me is my mouth,” she said. “All those po­lice of­fi­cers show­ing up for me was pa­thetic.”

She said she asked the po­lice whom they were there to pro­tect and they would not an­swer her. At that point, she be­gan to cross the road again, and the po­lice told her to stop.

“I had a rea­son to cross the road. I asked se­cu­rity there for a copy of the in­junc­tion again and they said they’d get it to me. I said that was ridicu­lous, they’re a mul­ti­mil­lion-dol­lar cor­po­ra­tion and they should be able to pro­duce a phys­i­cal copy for me.”

They handed her a copy and then the of­fi­cers walked to­wards her again. They asked her to leave and Best ad­mits she got an­gry and de­manded to be ar­rested. The of­fi­cers refused and more po­lice showed up. She asked them to ar­rest her and they said no.

“All these of­fi­cers there, I must’ve been quite dan­ger­ous,” she said. “More showed up then, about 20 po­lice in to­tal and then three sher­iff’s of­fi­cers showed up.”

She was then ar­rested and brought to a cell in the RCMP sta­tion in Happy Val­ley-Goose Bay. Best was kept overnight, which she said was a hor­ri­ble ex­pe­ri­ence for some­one who hadn’t been in jail be­fore.

The next morn­ing she was brought to the court­house and signed an un­der­tak­ing to obey the in­junc­tion. She thought about re­fus­ing to sign it, she said, but has pre-ex­ist­ing med­i­cal prob­lems that would have made it dif­fi­cult.

“I’m glad I signed it,” she said. “It gives me a chance to think about it. Not to say I won’t go back to jail, we still aren’t be­ing lis­tened to.”

She was sched­uled to reap­pear in court and isn’t sure what her next move will be, as of press time.

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