Eight anti-fracking activists plead no contest in court
MARIETTA – Eight of the 10 people arrested during a February fracking protest pleaded no contest Tuesday in Marietta Municipal Court.
They were accused of storming onto the property of GreenHunter Water, along Ohio 7 on the Ohio River, on Feb. 19. The facility is a storage site for the waste material produced by hydraulic fracturing.
The eight people pleading Tuesday were charged with a fourth-degree misdemeanor count of criminal trespass and were fined $250 and sentenced to 30 days in jail with credit for one day served and the other 29 suspended in lieu of a year’s probation, said Marietta Municipal Court clerk Christy Gerken.
They were ordered to pay $2,383 in restitution to GreenHunter, which will be split among the eight of them, said Gerken.
Pleading Tuesday were Peter Garcia, 34, of Minot, N.D.; Matthew Almonte, 21, of Lithia, Fla.; Subina Ahmed, 22, of Santa Rosa, Calif.; Wendy Jennings, 34, of Minneapolis, Minn.; Jessica Clark, 22, of Kalamazoo, Mich.; Steven Schorzman, 25, of Hamilton, Mont.; Patrick Perry, 21, of Athens; and Seth Schlotterbeck, 29, of Athens.
Two others have pleaded not guilty to the charges. Alexandra Kotcheff, 26, of Beverly Hills, Calif., is set for a pre-trial on Monday.
No hearings have been scheduled for Nathan Ebert, 33, of Millfield, Ohio, who was charged with a second-degree misdemeanor charge of resisting arrest in addition to the criminal trespassing charge.
Ebert is accused of erecting and climbing a 30-foot pole on the property and refusing to come down for nearly five hours.