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-The GJEP Team
By Jim Phillips, March 24, 2014. Source: The Athens News
Gilbert “Kip” Rondy, far left, reads a statement in court on behalf of the eight protesters. Photo: Jim Phillips
Eight protesters who last month briefly shut down an eastern Athens County injection well for oil-and-gas drilling wastes took a plea bargain in Athens County Municipal Court this morning (Monday).
The eight, whose individual cases were handled by the court en masse, had all been charged with criminal trespass, a fourth-degree misdemeanor. All agreed to plead no contest to a lower charge of disorderly conduct, a minor misdemeanor, and each received a fine of $150, with $100 of that amount suspended.
As a condition of the deal, the protesters must remain law-abiding citizens for one year, and have no contact with the well site where the demonstration took place.
Arrested Feb. 1 for their involvement in a protest at an injection well near Torch, Ohio, operated by the West Virginia firm of K&H Partners, LLC, were More (Smiles) Welch of Athens; Sean Pavlac of Cleveland; Caprice Huffman of Sunbury, Ohio; Gilbert (Kip) Rondy of Amesville; Michelle Ajamian of Millfield; Christine Hughes of Athens; Timothy Fultz of Athens; and Elizabeth Florentino of Athens.