June 20, 2022
Back when the COVID pandemic was raging at full force, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu began to conduct much of his official business at his residence. People who like to protest Gov. Sununu (including those who have problems with science in general and infectious disease protocol in particular) moved their protests from his office at the Capitol to his dwelling.
In response, the town Board of Selectmen, including Sununu’s brother Michael, drafted an anti-picketing ordinance designed to discourage — if not prevent — the protests. On December 28, 2020, police ticketed a number of protestors as well as a journalist who was covering the protests on behalf of the New Hampshire Journal.
All of them sought a trial. The town prosecutor tried to obtain convictions but, one after one, the defendants were found not guilty. It might have been that the arresting officers were not able to identify any of the individual defendants nor were they able to point to anything the defendants did that violate the ordinance. Or maybe it was, oh, say, I don’t know — the right of the people peaceably to assemble?
It was, in any event, as defense attorney Seth Hipple stated, “a dumpster fire.”