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LOCAL News :: Resistance & Tactics

Local peace activist goes on trial for chalking sidewalk 10 AM 4-23

In the first of seven recent cases downtown, activists go on trial for chalking anti-war slogans on the sidewalk in erasable chalk. Shelsea Hodge faces $162 fine if found guilty in a court trial in Dept. 1 or 2 Wednesday April 23 at 10 AM.
UCSC student and peace vigiler Shelsea Hodge goes to trial on the same day (Wednesday April 23) at 10 AM in Dept. 1 or 2 for "defacing the sidewalk" with erasable chalk at the site of the 6-day Peace Vigil at Cooper and Pacific.

This chalk is sold across the street at Palace Arts stationary as "Sidewalk Chalk" and can be removed with water within a minute.

It has traditionally be used at protests in Santa Cruz. When "middle-class" non-homeless activists use it, police stand by and watch. When activists fighting anti-homeless laws, gentrification, or the elimination of public spaces use it, police have cited or jailed the activists.

5 people were cited at the Vigil Against Two Wars (held March 7 through March 13) for chalking. 1 other was cited before the vigil. Another after the vigil had ended. Total chalk-criminals at large: 7.

Local courts have upheld convictions for chalking as "defacing the sidewalk" even though the judges acknowledged that no permanent damage was done and no meaningful expense incurred in the cleaning up (some activists even offered to clean it up afterwards and were still cited and convicted).

Shelsea faces a $162 fine for chalking if found guilty (or the equivalent time in community service).

Support Shelsea at 10 AM in court. More information, contact HUFF (Homeless United for Friendship & Freedom at 42304833.

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