Morton County Jury Finds 8 Pipeline Protesters Guilty

Caroline Grueskin | Bismarck Tribune

Protesters on trial at the Morton County Court House. | Photo: Tom Stromme/Bismarck Tribune

A Morton County jury found eight pipeline protesters guilty of disorderly conduct in the second Dakota Access-related case to go to trial.

The defendants, who ranged in age 23 to 57 years old and hailed from Hawaii to North Dakota, were all among the first arrested in the months-long protests that began along N.D. Highway 1806 in mid-August.

None of them will serve jail time, but South Central District Judge Cynthia Feland handed out fines and fees ranging from $1,250 to $1,685 — fines higher than one defense attorney said he’d seen in his 20-year career for a Class B misdemeanor. Those with criminal histories also got 10-day suspended sentences. Those without got deferred sentences, meaning their record will wipe clean if they stay out of trouble for the year.

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