By Mary Hladky
On Wednesday, Aug. 11, a beautiful sunny morning, the five resisters from the Memorial Day, May 31, line-crossing at the National Security Campus (NSC) appeared in Kansas City, Mo., Municipal Court. At the NSC, about 85 percent of the non-fissile parts are made or procured for US nuclear weapons. Several PeaceWorks-KC members attended in solidarity with defendants Jim Hannah, Tom Mountenay, Christian Brother Louis Rodemann, Henry Stoever, and Brian Terrell of Maloy, Iowa. The defendants were at court to plead not guilty, to notify the court that all five would be advocating on their own behalf, to consolidate all five cases into one trial, and obtain a trial date.
Sounds simple, right?
The defendants’ motion for consolidation of the five cases was approved, and they requested a special trial setting date. The city prosecutor asked that the judge recuse himself because of having dealt as a prosecutor with Attorney Stoever on prior nuclear resistance cases and other matters. The judge recused himself, and the case was sent to the presiding judge, who was not in the court Aug 11. So, through another judge, the parties agreed to come see Presiding Judge Ardie Bland at 10 a.m. Sept. 13, in Courtroom A, to set the trial date, with the exception that Brian Terrell does not need to return on that day from his home in Iowa. The five defendants’ waivers of legal counsel were accepted—Stoever, now retired from active law practice, does not “represent” any defendant except himself.
I was happy and proud to stand with these five men as they created awareness of the horrors of nuclear weapons and the very real option of converting the KCMO plant into one that develops green technology in support of the climate crisis for the greater good of all.
The defendants and others will meet at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 13 outside the courthouse, at Locust and 11th Street, in mutual support.
—Mary Hladky is the vice chair of PeaceWorks-KC.