An Occupy Wall Street activist convicted of assaulting a police officer who was arresting her during a March 2012 protest has been sentenced to three months in jail.
“A civilized society must not allow an assault to be committed under the guise of civil disobedience,” said Justice Ronald Zweibel. However, “The court finds that a lengthy sentence would not serve the interests of justice in this case,” he said.
The New Yorker writes that Cecily McMillan’s case “became the most watched … of the Occupy Wall Street arrests as most of the 2,600 people arrested during the protests had their charges dropped or settled without jail time. McMillan fought because she says she only swung her elbow back at the officer’s face involuntarily, after he grabbed her breast.”
McMillan, who was found guilty earlier this month, will also get five years’ probation and be required to perform community service. Her jail sentence could be reduced allowing for good behavior.
“The sentence was essentially exactly what the prosecution had requested, minus community service and a $5,000 fine they had also asked that McMillan be required to pay. Assistant District Attorney Erin Choi, the lead prosecutor on the case, is out on maternity leave. Taking her place, ADA Shanda Strain told the judge today that not only had McMillan ‘intentionally assaulted’ Officer Grantley Bovell, but ‘she falsely assaulted his character both inside and outside this courtroom.’ ”