Franklin Shelter Occupation Trial

 
On November 19th, 2011, organizers, activists, and DC community members involved in local struggles occupied the vacant Franklin School building at 13th and K St in NW Washington, DC. This building had housed the Franklin homeless shelter until the city closed it in 2008, dispersing clients right before the beginning of hypothermia season.

On the 12th of July, the defendants were found "guilty," but the judge gave them a very light sentence. The judge rejected a prosecution request for a community service sentence, saying most of the defendants' activities were in fact community service.

Meanwhile, the defendants, their supporters, and other activists are in effect warning developers NOT to buy the Franklin School if it ever is offered for sale by the city. One of the defendants bluntly stated that it would always be either a homeless shelter or vacant, as developers won't want to buy a building that could be retaken by activists at any time [...] Franklin has been taken over three times over the hypothermia/homelessness issue [since 2002].

Read More & Video Highlights of the Press Conference | WSQT Radio report on the press conference | Video Dispatches from the Trial

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