In July 2019, a group of 30 seniors was arrested for chaining themselves to a cattle grate and “blocking the only road that provides access to the Mauna Kea summit.” The kupuna (Hawaiian elders) were protesting the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) on their sacred mountain.
Due to the pandemic, litigation on this matter was stalled for years. On April 1, 2022, a Hilo judge dismissed the case. Unfortunately, the case was dismissed “without prejudice,” which means state prosecutors may choose to refile charges.
Dismissal Without Prejudice
As our very own Attorney Marcus Landsberg explains, a dismissal without prejudice “means, potentially, for the rest of your life, you have to sit and wait and wonder what the prosecutors are going to do.”
Protestors have already waited for years to find out what would happen with their charges and say the case has been financially and emotionally taxing. Hopefully, the State realizes that the ends of justice don't require a refiled case or a criminal conviction for these protestors.
The Attorney General’s office must consider whether re-filing charges would achieve justice in this case.
For the whole story, visit KITV4.
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