Freelance journalist and anarchist Josh Wolf refused to turn over videotapes of a protest being investigated by a federal grand jury and had been held for 226 days. For the past four months I’ve written something about his case every Friday — until last week when he was released was I was traveling and out of touch. Thanks for your patience with this crusade, and thanks to Josh for contesting a federal court order that, had it been copied elsewhere, would have turned any person with a cameraphone into a prosecutor’s eyes and ears. Tom Abate aka MiniMediaGuy.
This article contains statements from Josh, and his lawyer, David Greene, on the day of Josh’s release from a federal prison in Dublin, California. Said Josh:
“Today, I posted the video footage to my web site www.joshwolf.net/ so that the public will have the opportunity to see that there is nothing of value in this unpublished footage. As there is no sensitive material on the tape, there was no reason to remain in prison, given the fact that I got what I wanted from day one – the right to protect journalists from having to testify before a grand jury.”
Greene, executive director of the First Amendment Project, was succint:
“Today, Josh got what he wanted from day one — he will not have to testify before the grand jury about the events at the protest or the identities of participants.”
I’m just getting back into the work flow so I won’t have more to say except to thank the many other bloggers who supported Josh (I got a note from Cody Molica who has blogged about Josh’s case extensively.)
Finally, thanks to new U.S. Attorney Steve Schools. He recently took over the office in San Francisco that had brought the case against Josh. Schools could have dragged out this overreaching investigation but he did the right thing — at last.