In late July of this year, several anarchists in Portland, Seattle, and Olympia were subpoenaed to testify before a Federal Grand Jury set to commence on August 2nd at the Federal Courthouse in Seattle. The target of the investigation is presumed to be the vandalism that occurred during the May Day protests in downtown Seattle on May 1st, 2012.
August 2nd was the first day subpoenants were expected to appear before their inquisitors. Only one showed up. No one cooperated. After hitting this brick wall of silence, the Grand Jury scheduled its next round of interrogations for August 30th. But at the last minute, it was rescheduled for September 13th.
That day, Leah Plante (Portland) and Matt Duran (Olympia) went into the Federal Courthouse. Only one of them came out again.
Over a hundred people gathered outside the building, holding a support rally. Department of Homeland Security agents were scattered throughout the area, most of whom had guns with live ammunition. Inside, both Leah and Matt made it clear they would say nothing to the inquisitors. Leah was eventually dismissed but the inquisitors kept Matt. People outside soon learned there would be a contempt hearing in the courthouse regarding Matt’s refusal to testify. In a rare move by the feds, something that has not happened since McCarthy’s Red Scare, the contempt hearings were closed to the public. Within a few hours Matt was being stolen out of the courthouse in a blue van with blackened windows.