Friday, March 19, 2010

Peter Watts was convicted today

The news of this hit me hard this morning. Peter, you may recall, was beaten and pepper-sprayed while crossing the Canada-U.S. border at Port Huron, Michigan. For his troubles, they charged him with resisting arrest and assaulting a federal officer - a young man named Andrew Beaudry, who accused Peter of attempting to choke him during the beating Beaudry was administering.

Good people around the world - the first of which were Cory Doctorow and John Scalzi - mobilized to help us gather Peter the funds he needed for an excellent lawyer and a vigorous defense.

The fundraising worked wonders. The justice system of that place in Michigan failed profoundly and delivered a conviction.

Here is Peter's own, more generous account of the verdict.

I would link to the local Port Huron paper's coverage of the trial - it's a good account - but the comments by local readers so sicken me that I cannot in any conscience send you there.

Here's the Toronto Star's wrap-up that went online today.

I will write more on this later.


CORRECTION: MARCH 22: Up top in this blog entry, I'd suggested that the Port Huron paper's coverage of the trial was a good account.

In fact, I have since been informed that the paper incorrectly reported that Peter Watts was convicted of assaulting a federal officer. As of this morning, the newspaper has not corrected the error.

As a journalist myself, I regret my error in misplaced professional courtesy, and any inconvenience it may have caused.

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