Micah Turner arrested; supporters seek leniency for anti-war protestor

Sgt. Micah Turner

Military police were informed of the Army deserter’s whereabouts all along. What motivated their choice of time and location of arrest?

Micah Turner, Army Sargeant turned anti-war protestor, was arrested in early January* at his parents’ home after spending three months in legal limbo. He deserted his unit in September and later went public with his AWOL status and opposition to the ongoing war in Afghanistan.

His arrest follows two attempts to turn himself in at Fort Hamilton in October. He reportedly was turned away because no one was available to process an arrest on a federal holiday.

Military police, however, appear to have kept an eye on his movements since then and waited until he returned to his parents’ home for Christmas. He’s currently being held at Fort Irwin and will soon be transferred to Fort Bragg, where his Army unit is based.

According to his Twitter feed (@Unoccupier), which is being maintained by a friend, “Micah’s unit at Fort Bragg has authority to decide whether to retain, reprimand, prosecute, and/or discharge him.” It may also decide whether to hold him in pre-trial confinement. Supporters are organizing a campaign to advocate discharge rather than prosecution.

Turner was deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan five times.

* [An earlier version of this post stated that Turner had been arrested on January 10, but his arrest occurred no later than January 3.]

Images of Chicago #NoNATO

Toronto Star: Getty freelance photographer Joshua Lott arrested during Chicago NATO protests (photo by Getty/Spencer Platt)

Some of the most striking moments and photos of the last day, continuously updated.

Cool Quote of the Day

Before being in jail, it was hard for me to understand what Martin Luther King, Jr. and Gandhi meant when they said that prisons are the temples of freedom. It’s clear that they can do many things to your body and try to oppress you and use psychological violence. But there’s something so strong inside each of us, the human spirit, that they can not reach. They can put you in shackles and cold cement cells, and feed you horrible food, and put you in solitary confinement, but there’s no way that they can reach the human spirit. That was powerful—to find once again that that part is sacred.

– Pancho Ramos-Stierle, who was arrested while meditating during the police raid on Occupy Oakland on Nov. 14, 2011