January 17, 2020

No Charges Filed Against Bloomington Farmers' Market Protesters

Purple Shirt Brigade, Bloomington Community Farmers' Market - Thomas Westgard

Purple Shirt Brigade, Bloomington Community Farmers' Market

Thomas Westgard

No charges will be filed against five people cited for protesting an alleged white supremacist at the Bloomington Community Farmers' Market last year.

The Purple-Shirt Brigade, which says it engages in creative non-violent protests, saw five of its members cited for disorderly conduct at the market in November.

The group was protesting vendor Sarah Dye, a self-described white identitarian, whose presence at the market stirred up tension in the community.

Charles Bond was among those cited and says, if the city allowed Dye to stay at the market on the grounds of free speech, it has no right to penalize him.

“Any advocate for free speech, whether they hate us or love should be thrilled that we’re not prosecuted," he says.

In a statement, Monroe County Prosecutor Erika Oliphant said her office evaluated specific facts and circumstances around the citations and decided not to prosecute.

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