"It's All Rigged": Alvin Bragg Drops All Charges For Columbia Protesters Who Took Over Building

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by Tyler Durden
Friday, Jun 21, 2024 - 04:00 PM

While Donald Trump had a white collar misdemeanor upgraded to a felony by Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, dozens of pro-Palestinian protesters who wreaked havoc at Columbia university have had their charges dropped, while 13 more will have their charges dropped if they keep out of trouble for the next six months.

Demonstrators supporting Palestinians in Gaza barricade themselves inside Hamilton Hall, an academic building which has been occupied in past student movements, in New York on April 30, 2024. (Alex Kent/Getty Images)

Police arrested 46 protesters who broke into Hamilton Hall, barricaded themselves inside, and then wrecked the joint.

During a hearing at the Manhattan Criminal Courthouse on Thursday, prosecutor Stephen Millan cited 'prosecutorial discretion' in their decision not to move forward with charges - arguing that protesters wore masks and covered surveillance cameras, therefore insufficient evidence existed to show that any individual defendant damaged property or injured anyone. Millan also noted that no police officers were injured during the arrests, and that none of the people arrested had criminal records.

Columbia University students protest the Israel-Gaza conflict at Columbia University in New York City, on April 27, 2024. (Emel Akan/The Epoch Times)

"All these matters are dismissed and sealed in the interest of justice," Judge Kevin McGrath announced at the end of the hearing, where dozens of defendants and their supporters appeared with keffiyeh scarves around their shoulders.

Prosecutors declined to outright drop trespass charges against 13 other people arrested inside Hamilton Hall that night. Two of the 13 were also Columbia students, while the other 11 had no current affiliation with the school, although most were alumni.

The district attorney’s office proposed the 13 accept an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal, a provision in New York law that if accepted means the case against a defendant will be dropped and sealed in six months if they are not arrested for another offense in the interim. -Reuters

The 13 protesters offered the deal all rejected the offer via their lawyers, who are seeking to have those cases dismissed. They are due to return to court on July 25, by which date prosecutors will need to decide whether they're willing to proceed to trial.

"It's all rigged," said Trump adviser and founder of America First Legal, Stephen Miller.

Of course it is!