Felony charges being pursued related to Dakota Access Pipeline protests

Published: Sep. 14, 2016 at 5:11 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

Morton County authorities are investigating multiple protest activities in an area north of Almont that occurred Wednesday morning. Law enforcement arrested three individuals for felony reckless endangerment for being attached to construction equipment. Officers also arrested two other men for C felony conspiracy to commit reckless endangerment and other misdemeanor charges for their involvement in assisting unlawful protesters in attaching to equipment. Reckless Endangerment carries the maximum punishment of five years in prison and/or up to a $10,000 fine.

In addition, officers made a traffic stop on County Road 86 near the construction area. The driver was arrested for conspiracy to commit obstruction of a government function. Officers say they witnessed the driver transporting protesters. During an inventory search of the vehicle, officers found paint and mechanisms protesters are using to attach themselves to construction equipment. Authorities have impounded the van.

Law enforcement also arrested two men after they were connected to trespassing on another construction site. They were found walking in the area. They were both arrested for conspiracy to commit reckless endangerment, conspiracy to commit obstruction of a government function, disorderly conduct and criminal trespass. One was arrested for criminal facilitation. The other person was arrested for conspiracy to commit criminal facilitation and both were arrested for criminal trespass.

In total, eight people were arrested on charges related to illegal protest activities Wednesday.

Carlo Voli and Corey Maxa were arrested Tuesday, September and will face an additional charge of reckless endangerment for attaching themselves to equipment. They are also charged with numerous misdemeanor charges as listed below.

“The Morton County States Attorney’s office will pursue felony charges against the protesters who attached themselves to equipment due to the seriousness of the crime. Law enforcement officers are put in a dangerous situation when freeing these individuals, there is also a danger posed to DAPL, their workers and equipment along with the protester putting themselves also in a dangerous circumstance. We continue to encourage people to protest in peaceful and lawful manners,” said Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier.

Below is a list of the individuals arrested and charged on September 13 for unlawful protest activities:

Olowan Martinez, 42, SD - Criminal trespass + wanted in Nebraska for Terroristic threats, theft, criminal mischief x2

Nicholas Georgiades, 34, MN - Criminal Trespass

Charlie Thayer, 31, MN - Criminal trespass

Kristina Golden, 31, MN - Criminal trespass

Dale Americanhorse, Jr., 26, SD - Criminal trespass second offense

Kathryn Thunderhawk, 44, SD - Criminal trespass

Robert Swimmer, 25, SD - Criminal trespass

Philip Strickland, 28, VT - Criminal trespass

Christopher Schiano, 26, CO - Criminal trespass

Carlo Voli, 50, WA - Reckless endangerment, disorderly conduct, criminal trespass, obstruction of a government function

Kimberly Smith, 32, AZ - Criminal trespass

Lauren Roellig, 28, CA - Criminal trespass

Juaquin Moreno, 27, NM - Criminal trespass

Emily Weisbery, 26, WA - Criminal trespass

Brittany Johnson, 28, OR - Criminal trespass

Corey Maxa, 23, VA - Reckless endangerment, disorderly conduct, criminal trespass, obstruction of a government function

Orion Yazzie-nightwalker, 29, NM - Criminal trespass

Eli Damm, 33, WA - Criminal trespass

Eric Lewis, 25, NM - Criminal trespass

Karla Lorenzanaayala, 26, CA - Criminal trespass

Eric Moll, 27, TX - Criminal trespass

Anthony Fernandes, 37, WA - Criminal trespass

Arnold Schorder, 37, OR - Criminal trespass

As of September 14, a total of 69 individuals have been arrested for illegal protest activities.