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Protester at Gallegly's Office Gets Jail Time

August 28, 2003|From a Times Staff Writer

A Ventura woman has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge stemming from an antiwar demonstration at the Thousand Oaks office of Rep. Elton Gallegly earlier this year.

Lucille Duffy, 57, pleaded guilty Tuesday to interfering with a business and disturbing the peace.

She was ordered to serve 10 days in the Ventura County Jail and three years' probation, said Senior Deputy Dist. Atty. Scott Hendrickson.

Duffy was also ordered to stay 100 yards away from the Republican congressman and his staff during her probation, Hendrickson said.

Duffy was one of more than two dozen people who protested the U.S. invasion of Iraq at Gallegly's office April 1. The protesters entered the office about 10 a.m. and stayed until about 4 p.m.

During that time, Duffy and the other protesters prevented the congressman's staff from working by taking over desks, singing loudly and answering and placing telephone calls, officials said.

"While great deference should be and is given to our 1st Amendment rights to disagree, these protesters took their concerns far beyond legitimate action and disrupted the offices of a public official serving our community," Ventura County Dist. Atty. Greg Totten said in a prepared statement.

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