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Unicorn Riot @UR_Ninja
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The second trial stemming from the mass-arrest during protests against Trump’s inauguration is continuing this week in DC Superior Court. So far today, two prosecution witnesses have testified.

The first witness to testify today was Laurel Hassberger, a forensic technician who recovered several objects from the scene of the mass arrest at 12th & L on #J20. Assistant US Attorney Qureshi did a “show and tell” type presentation of several recovered objects to the jury.
This portion of testimony was basically identical to Hassberger’s appearance in the first trial. The prosecution dramatically presented several objects such as hammers, goggles, & crowbars. When cross examined, Hassberger admitted she pulled no fingerprints or DNA from the items
Forensics techs testified they didn’t recover items themselves, but actually received objects from two places:
-a pile on the sidewalk, where objects had been placed by officers
-the back of a police cruiser

Hassberger admitted she didn’t know who had items prior to her arrival
The next witness to testify, and the second new witness in this trial, was MPD Officer Harvey Hinostroza. Hinostroza arrived on the scene after the mass-arrest was underway, and was involved in processing arrestees and putting flexcuffs on them.
#J20 #J20Trials
The prosecution played several portions of Hinostroza’s bodycam video, as well as another officers, showing several of the current defendants being arrested and searched. One of them appeared to be injured; Hinostroza admitted he didn’t report the injury as required by MPD policy
Officer Hinostroza also claimed that the found rocks in the jacket pocket of one of he defendants he searched. When the rocks are seen on his body camera, Hinostroza places them in a pile with other mixed items on the sidewalk, as opposed to leaving them w the person’s property
Court was dismissed for a short recess and is expected to resume momentarily. It’s unknown which prosecution witness will be called next

#J20 #J20trials
Other new police witnesses who testified in the #J20 case were MPD officers Reginald Hildebrandt & Richard Geiger, who were both involved in processing people for arrest, including searching them & their belongings, after the mass arrest of the anti-capitalist anti-fascist march
Prosecution played police videos showing several defendants being arrested and searched. Asst. US Attorneys Kerkhoff & Qureshi focused on little features they’re expected try to correlate as evidence of guilt, such as:
- a small slit on pants
-a water bottle
-zipper on a backpack
Jurors in the second #J20 trial in DC Superior Court just finished hearing from MPD Investigator Michael Geiger, who was working as a patrol officer in a Civil Disturbance Unit (CDU) during protests on Trump’s Inauguration Day. #J20trials
Prosecutors had used Geiger’s testimony to introduce a series of police body camera videos showing defendants being arrested. The defense used their cross-examination of Geiger to show other portions of the body camera footage which showed police violence towards protesters. #J20
One video clip from Geiger’s body worn camera (BWC) played by the defense showed protesters being forced into a smaller compact group after being surrounded by police.

The video shows protesters being heavily maxed by police as officers push them tightly into each other from both sides. Officer Geiger is also seen striking several of them with his baton, including a man offering water to another protester suffering from exposure to OC spray.
Several of the jurors were seen to grimace and shake their heads while watching the portions of Geiger’s body camera which showed police behaving violently. The defense questioned Geiger about specific uses of his baton and how it related to MPD policies governing use of force
At one point, Officer Geiger is seen on his body camera as using his baton to force protesters into an area of sidewalk - as other officers are launching stingball grenades. directly into that same area he was pushing people into.
When asked by the defense of he pushed or shoved anyone, Geiger claimed “I didn’t shove anybody” but claimed he merely “pushed them,...lightly”
On Geiger’s body worn camera played in court, DC Police Commander Deville, who ordered the mass arrest, made his first appearance in this trial. The video shows Deville point at protesters and yell “Nobody leaves! They’re all locked up!”

Commander Deville’s testimony figured heavily in the last trial and is expected to play a major role in the second #J20 trial as well, but it isn’t clear when he will tesfify. His testimony in the last trial is cited in civil suits regarding the mass arrest of the entire protest
Testifying under oath last year, @DCPoliceDept Commander Keith Deville admitted:
-no dispersal orders were given on #J20
-he ordered the mass arrest w/o identifying specific ppl for specific crimes

Read more about Deville’s testimony in the first trial:…
Judge Knowles just ended court for the day in the second #J20 trial. Jurors heard testimony from Officer Daniel Tips, who rode a mountain bike on Inauguration Day as part of a Civil Disturbance Unit (CDU) following the anti-capitalist, anti-fascist march.
Officer Tips testified about being part of a group of officers ordered to form a line at 12th & L to begin detaining the entire group for mass arrest. He was working the line when a group of protesters charged the police line, breaking it, allowing many of them to escape. #J20
After several people ran into him while making their escape, Tips and another officer grabbed onto one protester, who the prosecution in opening arguments claimed to have identified as a current defendant (Kerkhoff repeatedly asked about the motorcycle helmet)
On cross-exam, Defense pointed out the brutal nature of this interaction. Officers can be seen grabbing a man by his backpack, throwing him violently face first to the ground as another maces him in the face at point blank range as another yells, “stay right fucking there bi*ch”
On cross examination Officer Tips admitted the existence of MPD standard operating procedures (SOP) which seem to have been violated in this event. For instance, the SOP forbids officers from “escalating” behavior including “taunting” & “verbal abuse”
#J20 #J20trials
Officer Daniel Tips isn’t done being cross-examined yet. His questioning by defense counsel will resume in Judge Knowles’ court around 10:30 AM tomorrow.
Also tomorrow, in another courtroom presided over by DC Superior Court Chief Judge Robert Morin, govt will seek to admit an “expert” witness: FBI employee Christina Williams, who last week admitted to only a passing familiarly w/ protest subjects she is supposed to testify about
See our court thread from last Friday for more notes about FBI employee Christina Williams, who the #J20 prosecution seeks to admit as a “black bloc expert”
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