Judge grants bond for anti-training center activists accused of charity fraud

DeKalb County Judge James Altman granted a $15,000 bond for each activist.
Published: Jun. 2, 2023 at 12:50 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 2, 2023 at 4:17 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - A judge has granted bond for three activists accused of illegally using a nonprofit organization to support and bail out individuals protesting the development of the Atlanta Public Safety Training Center.

Marlon Scott Kautz, Savannah Patterson, and Adele Maclean made their first court appearance Friday.

Deputy Attorney General John Fowler argued that the three activists were heavily involved in criminal acts at the site of the public safety training center and requested that bond be denied.

Defense Attorney Donald Samuel argued that the activists were using the Atlanta Solidarity Fund lawfully and exercising their right to free speech.

DeKalb County Judge James Altman granted a $15,000 bond for each activist, outlining certain conditions such as staying off of social media, remaining in Georgia, and refraining from any illegal involvement in operations pertaining to the Atlanta Public Safety Training Center site.

Critics of the project say the arrests were politically motivated ahead of Monday’s City Council vote on public funding for the public safety training center.

“This is nothing more than repression right here, right now happening in Atlanta and Georgia,” said Kamau Franklin, community organizer.

Franklin is arguing the State is overstepping in targeting organizers of a bail fund that raised money to support the defense of those arrested in connection to the controversial training center project.

RELATED: Group protests the arrests of 3 activists charged with charity fraud

“That is what’s being targeted. This is nothing more than political repression of organizers and activists against ‘Cop City,’ said Franklin.

Bail was set at $45,000 for all three individuals.