Media inquires may be directed to email@example.com or 612-293-9657. Below is our most recent press release. Previous press releases are available here. Legal documents pertaining to Scott and Carrie’s cases are here.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 14, 2011
Contact: Jude Ortiz, Scott and Carrie Support Committee (SCSC), 612-293-9657, firstname.lastname@example.org
Scott DeMuth Sentenced for Misdemeanor Charge Under Animal Enterprise Protection Act
Sentence Includes Six Months of Incarceration, One Year of Supervised Release, But No Restitution
Davenport, IA ― Earlier today, Scott DeMuth, 23, was sentenced for a federal misdemeanor charge of conspiracy in relation to an animal release at Lakeside Ferrets in Howard Lake, Minnesota in 2006. DeMuth accepted a plea agreement to this charge under the Animal Enterprise Protection Act (AEPA) on September 13 of last year.
DeMuth’s sentence includes six months of incarceration and one year of supervised release. In court, the prosecutor, Clifford Cronk, pushed for DeMuth to pay restitution even though this was not included in the plea agreement. DeMuth’s lawyer, Michael Deutsche of the People’s Law Office in Chicago, also requested that DeMuth be placed in a halfway house or on house arrest because he is not a danger to society and is currently enrolled in graduate studies at the University of Minnesota. Additionally, Deutsche requested that DeMuth be given a self-surrender date so he would have time to arrange his affairs prior to turning himself into custody. U.S. District Court Judge John Jarvey rejected Cronk’s and Deutsche’s requests. Jarvey accepted the plea agreement as it had been negotiated last September and ordered DeMuth taken into custody.
“Cronk put in his best efforts and threw out more inflammatory rhetoric today in a vindictive attempt to sidestep the plea agreement, but it didn’t work,” said Lisa Williams on behalf of the Scott and Carrie Support Committee (SCSC). “Scott was sentenced according to the plea agreement for a misdemeanor, which both Scott and Cronk agreed to last September when it was obvious how baseless and politically motivated the felony conspiracy charges against him were. Although we are outraged that Scott has been taken from his community, we are glad that Cronk was not able to pursue his malicious quest unimpeded.”
The sentencing hearing was finally set for today after being pushed back repeatedly by the presiding judge due to various scheduling conflicts. Supporters of DeMuth have noted how little interest the courts have taken in this case since the plea agreement. Through the plea agreement, Prosecutor Cliff Cronk had to abandon his attempts to hold DeMuth accountable for the 2004 Animal Liberation Front raid at the University of Iowa. That case remains unsolved at the expiration of its statute of limitations, despite the Federal Bureau of Investigation spending years and untold thousands of dollars investigating the incident. Cronk used inflammatory rhetoric throughout the pre-trial hearings to paint DeMuth as a danger to society based on his alleged political views. At one point, Cronk went so far as to write in a court document that DeMuth is an anarchist and “therefore, he is a domestic terrorist.”
“The government’s handling of this case since the plea agreement last year shows that there is no ‘justice’ being served by Scott’s sentencing,” said Williams. “There is no compelling societal good that results from Scott being removed from his family, loved ones and community. There is only the government wielding its power over Scott because of his perceived politics in order to discourage him and others from expressing dissent.”
Court documents from DeMuth’s case are available at: http://davenportgrandjury.wordpress.com/resources/