Rev. Hoye Sentenced for Unjust Conviction

William B. May

OAKLAND, CA, Feb 19, 2009 -- This afternoon, Judge Stuart Hing sentenced Walter Hoye to 30 days in jail, imposed a fine of $1,130, and placed him on probation for three years with a condition that he stays more than 100 yards away for the abortion clinic where he was arrested.

Hoye refused to accept the terms of the probation because it would abridge his First Amendment rights. He indicated that he would follow the law, but would not accept the proposed restrictions. The judge then said he was going to impose probation in Rev. Hoye anyway, which is illegal. Attorneys and Reverend Hoye met in chambers for hours with no resolution. The sentencing was continued until March 20, and Walter left today with his wife, free and with no restrictions.

If the 30-day sentence remains in place, Walter Hoye will be able to do alternative community service.

One of Walter’s attorneys, Mike Millen, made the point that there was a "conspicuous absence" of clients at the trial that Rev Hoye was alleged to have harassed.

Despite the lack of any evidence or a victim, Hoye was inexplicably convicted of something he did not do on January 15. This was a grave injustice.
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