MASON - Three women who locked themselves to construction equipment to protest the installation of an oil pipeline have been found guilty of a felony. After a week-long trial, a jury found Barbara Carter, Vicci Hamlin, and Lisa Leggio guilty of resisting and obstructing a police officer. The three were also found guilty of trespassing, a misdemeanor. The three were taken to the Ingham County jail, where they will await sentencing on March 5th.
In July, the three women and one man chained themselves to a bulldozer and excavator being used by the Enbridge oil company to install a new pipeline near Stockbridge in eastern Ingham County. Law enforcement officials had to remove them from the site.
The demonstrators preliminary hearing in August was surrounded by protests from their supporters. The trial began this past Monday, and it too had some demonstrations outside the courthouse. Extra law enforcement officials were brought in to assure the proceedings would not be disrupted.
The man, William Lawrence pleaded to resisting and obstructing a police officer without going to trial. He will be sentenced February 19.
Carter, Hamlin and Leggio, as well as Lawrence face up to two years in prison.