WASHINGTON — Charges have been dropped against the last remaining protesters who had been facing prosecution in connection with protests in D.C. on Inauguration Day.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office had been unable to secure any convictions in the cases that were brought to trial. Six people were acquitted in December by a D.C. Superior Court jury.
Out of more than 200 people arrested that day, 20 have pleaded guilty to misdemeanors and were ordered to pay fines. One protester pleaded guilty a year ago to felony rioting and assaulting a police officer, and was sentenced to four months behind bars.
In January, the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia dropped charges against more than 100 defendants.
Prosecutors registered another setback in May when D.C. Superior Court Chief Judge Robert Morin tossed out felony charges against 10 protesters after determining the U.S. Attorney’s Office committed a “serious violation” by withholding full video of protest planning meetings obtained from Project Veritas.
In today’s motion, prosecutors moved for the remaining 38 cases to be thrown out. “After further review, the United States, in the exercise of its discretion, has determined that these matters should be dismissed without prejudice,” states the motion.
The ACLU charged last year that D.C. police committed First, Fourth, and Fifth amendment violations and violated D.C.’s First Amendment Assemblies Act for surrounding protesters without probable cause to believe they were the ones committing unlawful acts that day.