Local minister agrees to provide housing for Occupy Walk USA participant Danny Johnson, recharged with felonies after case was thrown out by judge in May.
CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–August 9, 2012 – A Cook County Circuit Court judge agreed to release Occupy Walk USA participant and NATO protester Danny Johnson on $75,000 bond and electronic monitoring yesterday morning after a local minister and his church agreed to provide the political activist with housing while he awaits trial for a case stemming from a May NATO-related protest in Chicago. Johnson will need $7,500 to post bond and have him released from Cook County Jail to the house arrest program at the church.
Johnson, who is originally from the west coast, had been denied bond last week while supporters worked to provide a “permanent” address for the Occupy Walk USA participant. Johnson was originally arrested at a May 15 immigrant rights action staged as part of a week of protests around NATO’s meeting in Chicago, and spent a week in jail until his case was thrown out by Judge Luckman – due to a lack of clear intent or evidence. The original felony charge was later reinstated with two criminal counts, rather than one, on June 29 by a grand jury at the behest of States’ Attorney Anita Alvarez.
Johnson has been jailed since late July after the economic justice advocate voluntarily returned to Chicago and turned himself in to fight the second round of charges, which both Johnson and eyewitnesses flatly deny.
Johnson is a member of Occupy LA and Occupy Walk USA, a national walk-a-thon from the west coast to the east coast to advocate for economic justice. In February, he began walking from San Diego to New York with other participants as part of the campaign, and was in New York when he learned about Alvarez’ move to re-criminalize him. He has been accepted into and been supported by many communities across the country because of his clear desire and intentions to aid in creating a better future for his daughter and this country. This type of social change advocacy and solidarity with those standing up for a better world must be encouraged and supported, not discouraged and punished.
Occupy Chicago has formed a committee to support those facing criminal charges that stem from the NATO week of actions. For information on these efforts, email [email protected].