A group of people who allegedly broke into and vandalized Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base in April made their initial appearance Thursday in U.S. District Court in Brunswick, where they announced their intention to defend themselves collectively.
It is unclear at the moment which path their defense will take — the Washington Post reported April 5 that after authorities detained the seven people from the “Kings Bay Plowshares” group, other members of the Plowshares movement issued a release essentially admitting to the behavior, stating that the group was responsible for going to “three sites on the base: The administration building, the D5 Missile monument installation and the nuclear weapons storage bunkers.
“The activists used crime scene tape, hammers and banners reading: The ultimate logic of racism is genocide, Dr. Martin Luther King; The ultimate logic of Trident is omnicide; Nuclear weapons: illegal — immoral.”
The group coincidentally appeared in court in similar navy-colored jail smocks, and appeared lively at times, with brief remarks regarding the competition for baseball’s American League East Division crown.
The youngest member of the group is 55 years old. The oldest checks in at 78 years, and all but one are scheduled for a detention hearing May 17. Stephen Michael Kelly, 69, told the court he does not need a hearing because he has a detainer on him from a trespassing charge from an incident at a Washington state nuclear weapons facility.
Kelly is charged with conspiracy, destruction of property on a naval installation, depredation of government property and trespassing. Mark Peter Colville, 56; Clare Therese Grady, 59; Martha Hennessy, 62; Elizabeth McAlister, 78; Patrick Michael O’Neill, 62 and Carmen Trotta, 55, all also face the same counts.
The depredation charges carry the toughest penalties — a maximum of 10 years in prison, three years supervised release and possible fine of up to $250,000. The first two charges each could result in a maximum five years in prison, three years supervised release and the $250,000 fine, while the trespassing charge contains a maximum six months prison time, one year supervised release and a $5,000 fine.