United States Attorney Jenny A. Durkan
Western District of Washington
FIVE SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR CONSPIRACY, TRESPASS, AND DESTRUCTION OF GOVERNMENT PROPERTY
Group Cut Through Three Fences, Violated Areas Secured by Armed Guards
Five protestors who knowingly violated a secure area at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor, near Silverdale, Washington, on November 2, 2009, were sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to prison terms ranging from two months to 15 months in prison for conspiracy, trespass, destruction of property on a naval installation, and depredation of government property. The five were convicted December 13, 2010, following a four day jury trial. The jury deliberated just over four hours before finding the five defendants guilty on all counts. STEPHEN M. KELLY, 62, of Oakland, California and SUSAN S. CRANE, 67, of Baltimore, Maryland were each sentenced to 15 months in prison. WILLIAM J. BICHSEL, 82, of Tacoma, Washington, was sentenced to three months in prison and six months of home detention. ANNE MONTGOMERY, 84, of New York City was sentenced to two months in prison and four months of home detention. LYNNE T. GREENWALD, 61, of Bremerton, Washington, was sentenced to six months in prison and 60 hours of community service. All five defendants will be placed on one year of supervised release and will share a $5,300 restitution obligation. U.S. District Judge Benjamin Settle called the five’s actions “a form of anarchism. If it goes unchecked it will lead to a break down of the social order and descend into chaos,” the judge said.
According to testimony at the trial, members of the group used bolt cutters to cut holes in three chain link fences in order to enter the Main Limited Area (MLA) at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor. The defendants entered the secure area where they were apprehended and ultimately arrested by armed military personnel.
At the lengthy sentencing hearing Judge Settle noted that one or more of the defendants could have been killed when they attempted to enter the secure area. Judge Settle said “Little thought was given to the impact on the young men who are sworn to protect the base.”
In sentencing documents, prosecutors wrote “the defendants have not shown respect for the rights of others. They have trespassed into a highly restricted area, destroyed the Navy’s property, and placed themselves and others in serious jeopardy. Throughout this case, the defendants have
sought to justify their behavior by comparing themselves to heroic individuals who have reacted to being disenfranchised from the democratic process. They miss the point, however. These defendants have never been disenfranchised from the democratic process.”
The case was investigated by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Arlen Storm and Brian Werner.