State Police report arresting five Extinction Rebellion climate-change protesters they say were getting ready to use several pink 55-gallon drums outfitted so they could lock arms through them to make traffic even worse than usual this morning on the Leverett Circle Connector and on the ramps that connect to it.
Troopers arrested the five in the middle of the roadway on the Leverett Circle Connector for trespassing on state property and other charges.
Troopers also seized two vehicles that the trespassers had parked in two separate travel lanes to block traffic at the busy intersection. One of those vehicles, a 2017 Ford F250 pickup truck, was carrying three 55-gallon steel drum barrels with holes cut into them and pipes running through the holes, a device known as a “sleeping dragon.” The truck also contained a fourth “sleeping dragon” pipe device not fed through the barrels. A “sleeping dragon” is an improvised device made by protestors to secure themselves together, with their arms fed through a pipe or tube that runs through barrels through holes cut into them. Generally, a protesters hands are then locked to the hands of those next to them inside the barrels, to form a roadblock consisting of a connected series of protestors and barrels.
The four “sleeping dragons” seized from the trespassers this morning were made of steel pipes. Three of the devices were fed through holes cut into the three steel drum barrels. The seizure of the “sleeping dragons” by Troopers prevented the protestors from chaining themselves together in the devices to block traffic at the busy intersection, which is used by motorists connecting to and from the Tobin Bridge, Route 93, Storrow Drive, Nashua Street, and Charles River Dam Road.
State Police add that minutes later, two ambulances made their way through the circle " that would have otherwise been gridlocked, underscoring the importance of not allowing protestors to block roadways."
Arrested around 6:45 a.m.: Grant Rockett, 64 and Mary Hansen, 67, of Jamaica Plain, Joseph Rogers, 55, of Lyndeborough, NH, Mark Dugan, 54, of Newton and Jennifer Smith, 48 of Watertown. All were charged with trespassing on state property, disorderly conduct and conspiracy to commit a crime, police say.