Friday, December 07, 2007
Two Jailed for Ft. Huachuca Protest; N.M. Woman Remains Free
SIERRA VISTA, Ariz. A Roman Catholic priest from Las Vegas and an Oregon woman have been ordered jailed until their February trial on federal charges of trespassing on a southern Arizona Army base during a protest.
Franciscan priest Jerome Zawada and Frances Elizabeth Lamb of Bend were ordered held without bail at a court hearing in Tucson Thursday. A federal judge ruled Lamb violated terms of her release while awaiting trial for blocking traffic during an Oregon protest and Zawada had failed to appear in court on similar charges in Washington, D.C.
The pair were arrested at Fort Huachuca on Nov. 18 while protesting the base's role in training military interrogators. The base serves as the Army's primary intelligence training facility.
Military officials said they wanted to be arrested and trespassed despite warnings. A military prosecutor called the pair flight risks because they have failed to heed court orders in other jurisdictions.
Zawada, 70, and Lamb, 69, had been taken into custody Tuesday during their initial court appearance, where they entered not guilty pleas. Mary Burton Riseley, 65, of Cliff, N.M., was allowed to remain free pending trial.
The trio of protesters met with Army officials on Nov. 16 to discuss training at the U.S. Army Intelligence Center and School on the base, which they believe includes torture methods. The Army denies that it teaches or uses torture.
Similar charges were brought against two priests in 2006 for protests at Fort Huachuca. Steven Kelly, a Jesuit, and Louis Vitale, a Franciscan, were sentenced to five months in a federal prison in October after pleading no contest to trespassing and disobeying a law enforcement officer.
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