Politics

Bank of America "Chalk Vandal" Found Not Guilty

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Great news from the land of trial by jury, where ordinary citizens are the final check on government tyranny.

A 40-year-old man was acquitted Monday of 13 misdemeanor vandalism charges that stemmed from protest messages written in chalk in front of three Bank of America branches in San Diego.

Jeffrey David Olson's attorney argued during the trial — which garnered national attention — that his client was engaging in a legal protest and was not maliciously defacing of property.

Olson could have faced up to 13 years behind bars if convicted of all counts. Jurors began deliberating Friday…

The prosecution of Olson brought condemnation of the City Attorney's Office from Mayor Bob Filner, who called it a waste of time.

Tosdal said it was an "enormous waste of public resources." He said bank officials demanded the prosecution because they didn't like his client's message….

Ronald Bailey blogged on this weird case last week.