State of Pennsylvania Drops Charges Against Elliott Madison and Michael Wallschlaeger in G20 Twitter Case

PITTSBURGH, Nov. 3 (UPI) — State charges were dropped against two Pittsburgh Group of 20 protesters accused of posting information about police activity on the Internet, a lawyer says.

Elliott Madison and Michael Wallschlaeger were facing charges of hindering apprehension, criminal use of communication facility and possessing instruments of crime for allegedly posting the information on their Twitter accounts and sending text messages, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Tuesday.

But the Allegheny County District Attorney has dropped the charges to allow a more wide-ranging federal case against them to proceed unencumbered, defense attorney Claudia Davidson, who represents both men, told the newspaper, adding, “The charges were ill-thought, ill conceived and they never should have been filed to begin with.”

“After an extensive review of the facts and circumstances underlying those two arrests that took place on Sept. 24, 2009, there appears to be sufficient evidence to suggest that certain acts that occurred during the G20 summit were not isolated incidents confined to Allegheny County but instead may have been related to more expansive activities that went beyond the Pittsburgh G20 in both time and substance,” district attorney spokesman Mike Manko said.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

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