10 IN GARDNER PROTEST PLEAD NOT GUILTY
The ADAPT protesters arrested after a nearly 58-hour sit-in at Sen. Cory Gardner’s Denver office, where they tried to pressure him to vote against the Senate health care bill, on Tuesday entered not-guilty pleas.
Nine of the protesters were arrested while still in the Republican’s office. Another was arrested while protesting downstairs. All were charged with trespassing. Some also were charged with interfering with police.
The protesters, many who have disabilities, entered Gardner’s waiting room the morning of June 27 and stayed there until police arrested them the evening of June 29. Gardner’s office initially allowed the protesters to stay, keeping staff on duty to assist them.
Gardner’s staff eventually called Denver police, saying management of the office building at 17th and Lawrence streets told them the protest was in violation of Gardner’s lease.
ADAPT protesters were previously arrested in January on charges of trespassing while trying to access Gardner’s office.
Working with the attorney David Lane, the group is fighting that arrest in court, arguing that the building management violated the protesters’ First Amendment right to freely assemble and redress grievances before the government.