Six protestors were charged on Friday, Oct. 16 by the San Luis Obispo District Attorney’s Office from the July 21 Black Lives Matter protests.
Three men in their early 20s, Amman Asfaw, Marcus Montgomery, and Joshua Powell, were charged Friday morning. Three additional protestors, Jared Hill, Sam Grocott and Robert Lastra Jr. were charged Friday afternoon.
Participants in the July 21 protest blocked both directions of traffic on highway 101. A car hit a protester, resulting in damage to the car. Robert Lastra Jr. allegedly broke the back window of the car with a skateboard, and the District Attorney’s Office charged him with one felony count of vandalism. He was also charged with one misdemeanor count of false imprisonment.
The District Attorney’s office charged Jared Hill with one count of false imprisonment and one count of vandalism. Hill’s charges are both misdemeanors. Sam Grocott is charged with three misdemeanor counts of false imprisonment.
In September, Tianna Arata was charged with 13 misdemeanors for events that occurred at the July 21 protest, and Elias Bautista was charged with one felony count of resisting an officer by force or violence, and “two misdemeanor counts of resisting, obstructing or delaying a peace officer,” according to the District Attorney’s Office.
Hill, Lastra, and Grocott are being charged together and will be tried together because their alleged crimes all occurred on the same day, Chief Deputy District Attorney Jerret Gran said. This has to do with judicial efficiency, he said. They will appear in court on Nov. 16.
Hill, Lastra and Grocott are not charged in the same group as Arata, Asfaw, Montgomery and Powell, who are also charged for events that occurred at the July 21 protest.
Elias Bautista was charged separately from both groups.
Arata, Asfaw, Montgomery and Powell will appear in court tomorrow, Oct. 21 at 8:30 a.m. to hear Judge Matthew Guerrero’s ruling on their group of charges. The court appearance will be live-streamed on the San Luis Obispo Superior Court website in Department 8.
Stephanie Zappelli contributed reporting to this story.