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Friday – All 5 folks have been released from jail on the own personal recognizance.
3:30 PM – The five activists arrested have been set a $1,500 bail each. They are all scheduled for arraignments in the morning, where charges will be made official and bail may be reset.
10:15 AM – Five activists arrested and taken away in association with the banner hang this morning. Waiting to hear their charges. Two fire trucks responded to the scene and have removed the banner.
Roanoke, VA – Early this morning members of Mountain Justice, Rising Tide North America and Radical Action for Mountain’s and Peoples’ Survival (RAMPS) hung a banner, suspended between two downtown buildings on Jefferson street in Roanoke. The groups are acting in support of community demands in Virginia, Kentucky, West Virginia and Tennessee that billionaire coal baron Jim Justice stop poisoning water, exposing communities to devastating mountaintop removal coal mining operations and leaving central Appalachia a public health disaster. The banner which reads; “Jim Justice Profits, Appalachia Pays.
The activists hanging the banner are with Mountain Justice, a regional group committed to an end of Mountaintop Removal and a just economic transition for Appalachia. They are joined by RAMPS, based in West Virginia, and Rising Tide North America, an international network of grassroots groups focused on stopping climate change.
Erin Mckelvy, of Lee County Virginia and a member of Mountain Justice spoke to reporters on the scene, “ There’s a lot of people out of work across the coalfields today, in part because of the bad business planning done by people like Jim Justice. Justice has the means to properly clean up these sites, and we think Justice’s part in destroying Appalachia’s mountains needs to end yesterday. How much more does one person need? Appalachia needs a new path forward, and Jim Justice should join us, or get out of the way.”