Volume 75, Number 13 | August 17 - 23, 2005

Speaker rails, but may face jail


Geoffrey Blank, a member of the No Police State Coalition, may be looking at up to four years behind bars without his megaphone. Blank, who regularly participates in unpermitted speak-outs using an electric bullhorn at Union Square’s south plaza, says he’s concerned that the Manhattan district attorney has consolidated several cases against him into one trial, meaning the sentence could be higher than if the cases were heard individually. The charges include two for inciting to riot and others for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. The case will be heard on Sept. 12 in Criminal Court. Blank will represent himself in court. “I’m going to try to win the jury over,” he said, though adding, “I’m betting I come out of this with some jail time.” Blank said N.Y.P.D. Joint Terrorist Task Force police officers recently paid him a visit at Jacob Riis Park while he was on duty sitting in his lifeguard chair and told him they’d be keeping an eye on him. A D.A. spokesperson confirmed Blank’s cases have been consolidated into one.

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