Greenpeace Activists Charged With Raising Banner At Trump Tower

CHICAGO (CBS) — Six people, including at least four Greenpeace activists, were charged Sunday with raising a banner at the Trump Tower downtown protesting the administration’s stance on global warming.

Taylor Blevons, 27, of north suburban Deerfield; Wendy Jennings, 38, of Minneapolis, Minnesota; Jeremy Alpert, 43, of north suburban Glencoe; and David Khoury, 47, of Leslie, Arkansas, were all charged with one felony count each of criminal damage to property and a misdemeanor count of reckless conduct, according to Chicago Police.

The demonstrators were taken into custody “after causing a disturbance and hanging a banner from the 16th floor causing extensive damage to the building” shortly after 1:30 p.m. Friday in the 400 block of North Wabash, police said.

The environmental group sent out a statement at 1:27 p.m. Friday that “activists with Greenpeace USA are at Trump International Hotel in downtown Chicago, preparing to send a message that the Trump Administration can’t ignore.”

It said, “They are pulling a large banner from the ground to the giant ‘TRUMP’ letters on the building,” the advisory continued.

The sign, reading “RESIST DEFEND” was in the process of being raised when police started making the arrests.

In another statement issued after the arrests, Greenpeace said four of its members raised the 50-by-35-foot banner, “but were detained before they could lock it into place.”

“This action demonstrates that we will not accept the threats that the Trump administration poses to people here and around the world,” Blevons, identified as one of the activists who raised the banner, said in the statement.

“Ignoring the science of climate change and removing us from the Paris Climate Agreement is just another indication that the billionaires who have hijacked our democracy are putting the short term profit of corporations over people and the planet,” Blevons said.

Jessica Bryant, 31, and 54-year-old Shirley Sexton were also charged with misdemeanor reckless conduct, police said. They both live in the Lincoln Square neighborhood.

They were all expected to be appear in bond court Sunday afternoon.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2017. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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