By Arek Sarkissian II
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday March 31, 2003
A UA law student and three Tucsonans were arrested Friday morning after they blocked East Congress Street to protest the war in Iraq.
The second-year law student, John Thomas Hardenbergh, 28, chained himself to the three other people: Michelle Davis, 31; Melynda H. Barnhart, 29; and Juliana Nannarone, 22. The group stretched across East Congress Street for about 15 minutes, completely blocking traffic just before 8:30 a.m., said Officer Kathy Wendling, a Tucson Police spokeswoman.
The three women linked themselves to Hardenbergh, across the street near the intersection of North Scott Avenue with U-locks, Wendling said.
Once the road was cleared, officers took more than 45 minutes to clear the area of other protesters. Officers removed the protesters from the street on their own. According to dispatch records, the Tucson Fire Department was not called in.
The four now face misdemeanor charges of obstructing a street or highway and failure to comply with officers. They were released at the scene. Their court date in Tucson City Court was not available.
Last month, three students and one university employee were arrested after they locked themselves to a railing in the Administration building. It took officers and firefighters nearly four hours to free the four before they were taken to Pima County Jail on charges of interrupting with the peaceful conduct of an educational institution and trespassing, both misdemeanors.
Charges against the employee, Rachel Wilson, were dismissed in Pima County Justice Court on Wednesday, while the three students were referred to the Dean of Students' diversion program.
According to a state supreme court Web site, none of the four involved in Friday's incident have faced any significant charges or convictions anywhere else in the state, nor do they have any felony convictions.
The protesters were not available for comment.