Pair taken into custody after failing to testify
Ann McGlynn Posted: Tuesday, November 17, 2009 8:50 am
Two people who appeared before a federal grand jury this morning were taken into custody after they refused to testify.
Carrie Feldman, 20, and Scott DeMuth, 22, both from the Twin Cities, were jailed for civil contempt.
After their appearances before the grand jury, the two were brought into open court. The two had refused to testify in the secret proceeding. They then were offered limited immunity for their testimony in order to compel them to talk, but they still refused. That led to the civil contempt.
They will be held indefinitely or until they agree to testify.
The two believe the grand jury is investigating the Animal Liberation Front, which claimed responsibility for a 2004 break-in at a lab at the University of Iowa.
Protesters show support for ‘Carrie and Scott’
About three dozen people are protesting this morning outside the federal courthouse in Davenport as two people are scheduled to appear before a grand jury that may be investigating an animal-rights-related break-in at the University of Iowa in 2004.
Protesters are carrying signs, some of them reading, “Liberation, not incrimination,” “Resist grand juries” and “Support Carrie and Scott.”
Carrie Feldman, 20, and Scott DeMuth, 22, both from the Twin Cities, are scheduled to appear before the federal grand jury at 9 a.m. today. Feldman appeared before the grand jury last month and refused to answer questions. Both said they will refuse to cooperate with the grand jury today.
A heavy presence of both Davenport and federal law enforcement is at the courthouse as well. A member of the federal Protective Services met with the protesters this morning, saying that their First Amendment rights would be respected. But he warned them not to impede traffic and not to deface the building.
Feldman and DeMuth believe the grand jury is investigating the Animal Liberation Front, which claimed responsibility for the University of Iowa break-in and released a video detailing the crime. These activists committed multiple felonies when they fraudulently obtained security cards, vandalized offices, stole equipment and released mice and rats bred for lab experiments. The university reported damage in excess of $450,000.
Both Feldman and DeMuth said they were in high school in 2004.