Charges reduced; DA makes historic statement in support of climate action

This morning marked a significant victory for the climate movement. Approximately 100 supporters gathered at the Fall River Justice Center for the scheduled trial of climate activists Jay O’Hara and Ken Ward. Bristol County District Attorney Sam Sutter dropped the conspiracy charges and reduced the other charges to civil infractions. O’Hara and Ward will pay $2,000 each in restitution to the Town of Somerset, Massachusetts.

O’Hara, Ward, and their attorney Matt Pawa, spoke to supporters outside following the conclusion of events in the court room. Sutter also addressed the assembled crowd, saying “[The agreement] was made with our concern for their children, the children of Bristol County and beyond in mind. Climate change is one of the gravest crises our planet has ever faced.”

A full press release will be posted here later today. Follow the commentary on Twitter via #ClimateTrial. More details and photographs are available at


Jay and Ken gathered outside the courthouse with their lawyers Matt Pawa and Joan Fund, along with climate activist Tim DeChristopher and other supporters.