Respected jury independence activist Julian Heicklen was arrested this morning at the Orange county courthouse in Orlando, Florida. The arrest is ostensibly for violating Chief Judge Belvin Perry‘s order banning “first amendment activities” in or near his
castle courthouse. (Here is a PDF of that order.) Perry has caged Julian until September 1st, at the earliest. Please join the call flood demanding Julian’s immediate release. See below for details.
Julian Heicklen is a 79-year-old former Penn State chemistry professor whose activism entails visiting courthouses nationwide to further the cause of jury independence. (Just last month he visited Pennsylvania, Ohio, Oregon and California.) Jury independence, or fully-informed juries, is the idea that jury members are legally entitled to judge not just the facts of a given case, but also the law. They may ignore the law and find a defendant not guilty of the charges against her, if they feel that verdict better serves justice.
Heicklen’s efforts are nothing short of heroic. He faces down cops and jail without losing his nerve. He has been arrested more than a dozen times. His sacrifice has earned my support.
Please join the call flood, today August 23rd, 2011.
- Call Judge Belvin Perryâ€™s office at 407-836-2008.
- Call arresting officer Ray Shulte of the Orange County Sheriff’s
office at 407-836-6069.
- Call the Orange County Sheriffs Office at 407-836-4357.
Together we are stronger.