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Native protester gets day in jail

Paul Legall
Hamilton Spectator
CAYUGA (Jun 15, 2006)

[SISIS note: The following mainstream news article is provided for reference only, as an example of how mainstream media treats indigenous resistance to genocide. Mainstream media often presents biased and distorted information, lacking pertinent facts and/or context. Inclusion of this article on our site should not be considered an endorsement by SISIS.]

A Six Nations protester who was dragged from his truck after forcing police to leap for safety, will serve one day in jail.

David Martin pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and to fleeing police yesterday, after a series of incidents that left OPP at the Douglas Creek Estates scrambling for their lives.

He sped through police lines several times, led cruisers on a chase, and was finally dragged from his truck after officers smashed the windows of his truck.

Assistant Crown attorney Alexandra Paparella sought two months in jail for the April 20 incident. She told Ontario Court Justice J.A. Colvin that Martin "jeopardized" the lives of seven people and called for a sentence that sends a strong message. Martin was also placed on probation for a year.

But defence lawyer Tom Loft said Martin is a responsible businessman who found himself in "extraordinary times and extraordinary circumstances," when police raided the subdivision early on the morning of the 20th. Loft said his client felt duty-bound to help protesters when he saw the OPP move in.

"He was not going there to incite (trouble) ... He had tunnel vision. In his mind, he was going down there because he wanted to protect those people," Loft told the judge.

Martin drove onto the subdivision in his truck and then weaved in and out of police barriers at high speed, refusing to stop when chased.

He was finally arrested after police on foot smashed the windows of his vehicle.

During his probation period, he will be banned from Douglas Creek Estates and prohibited from driving for 12 months.

"Good luck," the judge told Martin, "I hope you and the other native leaders can find a way out of this problem."

Also appearing in court yesterday was native protester Jeffrey Henhawk, who was arrested April 20 during the OPP raid at Douglas Creek Estates.

He has been remanded out of custody until July 12.

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