TWO ACTIVISTS arrested at a pro-marijuana protest on Independence Mall on Saturday had different reactions to the same bad news in court yesterday.
Authorities say Adam Kokesh, a former Marine, and Richard Tamaccio, a comedian who goes by N.A. Poe, "assaulted, resisted, opposed, impeded, and interfered" with National Park rangers at Saturday's "Smokedown Prohibition." U.S. District Judge Thomas J. Rueter ordered both men held for a detention hearing scheduled for Thursday after Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Goldberg said Kokesh has been silent and uncooperative and pointed out Tamaccio's alleged "substantial drug use."
"Are you guys serious? Are you serious?" Tamaccio yelled as U.S. Marshals ushered him out of the courtroom. "That's horrendous and you know it."
Kokesh didn't appear to react at all - or have anything to say to anyone, including Rueter.
"Can you hear me?" Rueter asked him.
Though organizers said Saturday was their fifth Smokedown Prohibition, a spokeswoman for Independence National Historical Park said it was only the second event for which the activists had obtained a permit.
"After the first event, we had suspicions that there might have been illegal activity and we increased our police presence," spokeswoman Jane Cowley said.
According to the criminal complaint, Tamaccio resisted officers' attempts to control him and seize a marijuana cigarette they claim he was holding. Kokesh, the complaint says, locked arms with another person who was smoking pot, and also resisted when officers attempted to control him.