Occupy Denver: Sean Driggers (finally) ID'd as felony arrestee, first 50 busted plead not guilty
After long wait and frequent online debate, the second felony charge to come from Saturday's Occupy Denver riot has been released: Sean Driggers was arrested on criminal intent to commit second degree assault and will face an advisement at 10 a.m. this morning. His bond will be set at $5,000; the DA's timeline to file formal charges on Driggers ends Monday.
There's an important distinction here: Driggers is not alleged to have actually struck a police officer, says Charles Nadler, president of the Colorado Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. This slight variation in charge is different from the case of John Sexton, the 33-year-old protester and recent Westword profile subject. Sexton recently lost his job as an insurance salesman over his arrest for felony assault of a police officer -- an accusation he denies.
Nadler doesn't know why the Driggers charge was so late in coming; he says the prosecutor heard of the case two days ago, but didn't know the name at that time, either.
Kelsey Whipple A protester is arrested during Saturday's most recent demonstration.
Perhaps the most significant aspect of the announcement is that Driggers is not the person who pushed over (or was potentially rolled over by) a police officer's motorcycle. The allegation, which Sexton told Westword had been attributed to him while in jail, fits neither man.
In the meantime, Occupy Denver's 48-person professional legal team has taken ongoing action on the cases resulting from the first two rounds of 24 and then 26 arrests made more than two weeks ago. All of those who were originally arrested have pleaded not guilty, meaning all arrestees also refused the same legal bargain across the board: one year's probation and eight hours of community service rather to avoid the potential for stricter consequences.
"They all entered a plee of not guilty, and there might be a change in some of those, but I don't expect many, if that," Nadler says. "Most want to go to trial, because they feel they were wrongfully arrested during a demonstration. We figured it would probably go this way, though each individual makes up their own mind. They are making a statement."