Miriam Kashia

Guilty or not guilty? You decide

Miriam Kashia of North Liberty was one of five people arrested in June 2019 while attempting to enter a West Des Moines venue where President Donald Trump was headlining a fundraiser for the Republican Party of Iowa. The activists were seeking to call out the president’s climate denial to the hundreds of people in attendance. -promoted by Laura Belin

On November 12, I was tried for a simple misdemeanor trespass, along with four others. Our “crime” was for entering a privately owned parking lot while protesting for climate action at a Trump fundraiser in West Des Moines and refusing to leave. We pled “not guilty” based on a clause in Iowa Code that says in essence: if you are justified in trespassing, it is not illegal.

At this writing, the judge has not announced the verdict from the bench trial. I was not allowed to read the statement for my defense that I had prepared for the trial. I am sharing parts of it with the public here, so you can decide: guilty or not guilty?

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