GREENE COUNTY, AL (WBRC) – Protestors who were in a standoff with state troopers to keep Greenetrack from being raided have been arrested says State Senator Bobby Singleton.
Singleton made a cell phone call to FOX6 News on Thursday morning to say that he and several others had been loaded onto a Department of Corrections bus in a mass arrest. Track workers, county commissioners and the CEO of Greenetrack have all been included in the arrest. Singleton adds they have been charged with obstruction of justice.
These arrests come after a standoff between state troopers and protestors lasted throughout the night.
On Wednesday, the State Supreme Court struck down an order from Green County Judge Eddie Hardaway that barred the governor's illegal gambling task force from continuing their raid on Greenetrack.
Troopers returned to Greenetrack on Wednesday night, but were met with a local opposition that included Sen. Singleton. The ensuing standoff lasted throughout the night until the arrests were made after 7:00 a.m. on Thursday.
According to the Senator, the arrests were orderly and the two sides had discussed how to conduct the arrests beforehand. "We want to make sure that we get a message out to the people of Alabama. We are orderly people and we are law-abiding people," says Singleton. "We do not want to be like the task force and Governor Bob Riley, who do not obey the state laws."
Singleton says he knows there was no way to save Greenetrack from the raid, but he is content with his symbolic arrest. He expects the protestors to be processed and bonded out.
Former federal judge and Dean of Cumberland Law School John Carroll says Greenetrack had run out of legal options after Judge Hardaway's order was vacated. "There just aren't any legal remedies left for Greenetrack. The Supreme Court has made it clear that the court cannot interfere with the activities of the task force. It is a symbolic gesture and it will play itself out in the courts later," says Carroll.
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