Four Defendants Go On Trial 24 June at DeWitt, NY Town Court
for Opposing Reaper Drone War Crimes at Hancock Air Base
At 9am, Wednesday 24 June, 2015, Ellen Barfield of Baltimore, MD, Jules Orkin of Bergenfield,
NJ, Joan Pleune and Beverly Rice of New York City, defended by Attorney Lewis B. Oliver
of Albany, NY, will begin trial before a six-person jury in the DeWitt, NY Town Court of
Judge Zavaglia, charged with 2 counts of disorderly conduct, one count of trespass,
and one count of obstructing government administration.
Over 2 years ago, on 28 April, 2013, the four were arrested with 27 others for allegedly
blocking the driveway leading to the main gate of the Hancock Reaper drone base on
East Molloy Rd, town of DeWitt.
The arrestees that day are members and colleagues of Upstate Drone Action, a grass-
roots group which calls public attention to the killing and terrorizing of Afghan civilians
by Hancock’s 174th Attack Wing of the NY National Guard, and urges drone operators
to examine their consciences.
Upstate Drone Action, along with colleague organizations Veterans For Peace and the
Granny Peace Brigade to which the defendants belong, believe the killing is immoral
and illegal, violating the United Nations Charter, and international treaty laws which
under Article 6 of the US Constitution are part of the supreme law of the United States
and supersede local and Federal law.
Since 2010 anti-drone activists have experienced nearly 200 arrests and numerous jail
sentences at Hancock for scrupulously-nonviolent protests, as part of a national campaign
to resist drones at a number of bases.