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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Furlough Friday protesters plead not guilty


Advertiser Staff, Wire Reports

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Attorney Eric Seitz on Monday entered a plea of not guilty on behalf of 14 people cited for trespassing during a sit-in at Gov. Linda Lingle's office to protest teacher furlough days.

RICHARD AMBO | The Honolulu Advertiser

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Twelve people who staged a sit-in at Gov. Linda Lingle's office to protest teacher furlough days pleaded not guilty to trespass charges Monday in District Court.

An Aug. 3 trial date was set.

Two other people scheduled to be arraigned yesterday were absent.

Six others who received citations and four who were arrested will be arraigned tomorrow and Wednesday.

The protesters are members of an ad hoc parents group called Save Our Schools.

They conducted the sit-in in hopes of prodding Lingle to end school furloughs that have left Hawaii with the shortest instructional calendar in the nation.

Seitz said most of the charges are for trespassing violations, which carry fines up to $500. Four are charged with petty misdemeanors, which could result in higher fines and possible jail time.

The Associated Press contributed to this report