Six people accused of rioting on Inauguration Day have been found not guilty in the first of several trials against protesters.
Justice Department prosecutors representing the USA government conceded at the beginning of the trial that there was no evidence any of the six defendants engaged in any property destruction or violence on January 20.
The trial against the protesters began last month.More news: Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. Lowers Holdings in Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK)
The six acquitted defendants were part of a group of more than 200 people who were rounded up and arrested during the #DisruptJ20 protest against Trump on Inauguration Day. But she allowed the rest of the charges ― two misdemeanor rioting charges and five felonies in connection with property destruction ― to go to the jury. The verdict came after a almost four-week trial.
Jennifer Armento, Oliver Harris, Brittne Lawson, Michelle Macchio, Christina Simmons and Alexei Wood were protesting President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Democrat slams Donald Trump Jr. for "serious case of amnesia" after testimony Skier Lindsey Vonn: I don't want to represent Trump at Olympics Poll: 4 in 10 Republicans think senior Trump advisers had improper dealings with Russia MORE's inauguration. Prosecutors argued that they were among the protesters that smashed windows of businesses and set a limousine on fire, causing damages that totaled $100,000.
The defendants were acquitted Thursday after a four-week trial.More news: IShares MSCI ACWI (ACWI) Declines 0.084% for Dec 20
Attorneys also suggested the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia is only pursuing the case to protect the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department, which appears to have violated D.C. regulations laying out how law enforcement is supposed to handle demonstrations in the nation's capital. We appreciate the jury's close examination of the individual conduct and intent of each defendant during this trial and respect its verdict.
Wood is a freelance photojournalist who was there covering the protests. Instead, they made the broader case that all protesters were aware of the violent intentions of other participants.More news: Recent Insiders Bustle: Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL)