Following the arrest of 12 individuals at an Enbridge Line 3 right of way site in northern Wadena County, July 19-20, a group of about 15 attendees waited outside the Wadena County Jail for the release of those arrested.
As the first of six women released, Kristin Lynne Razowsky and Patricia Jean Weber said the charges of trespassing are inaccurate. The individuals were arrested for gross misdemeanor trespass. Six of the individuals were chained together at the right of way site, including Weber. Several of those arrested, including Honor the Earth Executive director Winona LaDuke, had their first court hearing concerning the charges Wednesday morning. LaDuke was transferred to Aitkin County Jail and released on July 22, according to Honor the Earth.
"We were there as guests of 1855 treaty people ... and we were sitting there having a nice conversation about the pipeline and why it's wrong and why it needs to be stopped and the police said nothing about dispersing, they just all of a sudden said, 'You're under arrest,'" Patricia Jean Weber said of the July 19 arrest.
A group of four individuals also stood across from the courthouse after sharing concerns about how one of their friends was treated by the attendees outside the courthouse. The group also gave a letter to attendees.
Attendee Dhanya Olsen said the water protectors at the Line 3 sites are peaceful and prayerful people who will not be swatted away like gnats.
The women released were welcomed with sage, flowers, a card and coffee.