* Bob Enyart Live from El Paso County Jail. Hear Bob from his jail cell as he serves day six of a 9-day sentence. More information below from the Colorado Springs Gazette.
Activists jailed over trespassing at Focus
June 10, 2009 - 4:22 PM
JOHN C. ENSSLIN
A Colorado Springs municipal judge today jailed two anti-abortion activists after they refused to pay a fine for trespassing at the Focus on the Family headquarters.
Judge Spencer A. Gresham sentenced Kenneth Scott to 11 days in jail and Rev. Bob Enyart to nine days for their role in a Sept. 4 protest against Focus on the Family founder James Dobson's decision to endorse GOP presidential candidate John McCain.
Gresham also fined Enyart's brother Brian $100, which he agreed to pay.
A jury convicted the three men on May 8 following a one-day trial in which they each acted as their own lawyer.
Brian Enyart and Scott came to court wearing red T-shirts that read "Jesus is Judge" on the back. Bob Enyart brought his family along, tying his son's shoelace before standing to be sentenced.
During the trial, the defendants expressed frustration at not being able to raise anti-abortion issues or what they viewed as Dobson's "broken pledge" in supporting McCain's losing campaign against Barack Obama.
That tension continued through the sentencing where Gresham advised all three that he understood their position on the issue.
"I know you are all passionate about that," he said. "I don't want to hear that again."
Prior to the sentencing, Lisa Anderson, a spokeswoman for Focus on the Family asked the judge to consider the organization's concern over safety for its employees and visitors.
The judge rejected a request from the city attorney to require the men to pay $400 in restitution to Focus on the Family. Gresham said the security officials who responded to the incident were already on the payroll that day.
Initially, the judge also did not accept prosecutors' recommendation that Bob Enyart and Scott be jailed because of their previous arrest history. Instead he fined Scott $500 and Enyart $400.
When both men refused to pay, he offered them the option of public service, which they also rejected.
"I refuse to do public service to a system that is killing babies," Scott said.
Gresham warned all three men that he will increase their fines if they re-offend within the next year.
"This is a passionate crusade for you all," he said. "But you have to make certain you do it in a law-abiding fashion."
* See Links to Bob Enyart's Four 2009 Shows from Jail.