Another victory on the legal side from Standing Rock. On February 1, 2017, Water Protectors were arrested at the Last Child Camp. The raids came after MG Malcolm Frost, U.S. Army chief of public affairs, said that the government was acting on Trump’s order “to expeditiously review requests for approvals to construct and operate the Dakota Access pipeline compliance with the law,” according to The Guardian.
North Dakota District Judge David Reich dismissed charges of Criminal Trespass and Engaging in a Riot against Waste’Win Young. She is the former Historic Preservation Officer for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and Water Protector.
According to reports, Judge David Reich had “no inclination to spend more judicial time and resources” on a case which is nearly two years old and has been continued twice and has already consumed numerous hours of court time. Judge Reich dismissed the charges that were pending since February 1, 2017.
“Ms. Young as well as many Standing Rock members have traversed and accessed that land for their entire lives. There are treaties and laws which recognize their right to do so. It is known as an area containing many sacred and burial sites as well as areas people prayed and collected medicine,” said WPLC Cooperating Attorney, Andrea Carter.
We think daily of those who are incarcerated now and those with additional cases pending. For some, the cost was high to awaken the world but the Sacred Fire still burns today. We also know this struggle is not over. There are many Indigenous communities who are taking a stand in defense of the earth, water, and their sovereignty. Stand with them as you did with Standing Rock.
Judge Reich’s Order on Motion to Dismiss can be seen here.
We still want justice with all charges dropped.