Bridge protester arrested in Hinsdale
By DOMENIC POLI / Reformer Staff
Posted: 08/06/2013 03:00:00 AM EDT | Updated: 7 months ago
The bridges over the Connecticut River between Brattleboro and Hinsdale, N.H. (Reformer file photo)Tuesday August 6, 2013
HINSDALE, N.H.-- A local man familiar to area residents for his public demonstrations against the two bridges linking the town to Vermont was cited for allegedly causing damage to the pedestrian portion of one of them Friday.Michael Mulligan, 60, was cited with reckless conduct, disorderly conduct, criminal mischief (two) and littering, according to Hinsdale Police Lt. David Eldridge. Reckless conduct is a felony.Mulligan was released on $5,000 personal recognizance and is scheduled to be arraigned in 8th Circuit Court District Division in Keene on Thursday, Oct. 3.Eldridge said part of Mulligan's bail conditions mandate that he not walk within a mile of either side of the Charles Dana Bridge or stop any vehicle within 100 yards of it. The lieutenant said witnesses saw Mulligan pulling up some of the bridge's boards.Mulligan's arrest came one day after he appeared at a public meeting hosted by the Federal Highway Administration, the New Hampshire Department of Transportation and the Vermont Agency of Transportation. The meeting, held in the Brattleboro Union High School Multipurpose Room, was held to discuss the draft environmental assessment that had been released and was used to gauge local support for a project to rehabilitate the Charles Dana and Anna Hunt Marsh bridges and construct a new one to span over the nearby railroad tracks in Brattleboro and touch down near the stop light at the former Walmart location.Mulligan, who brought with him pieces of rust he had chipped off the bridges, said he feels the environmental assessment contains gross inaccuracies and said he fears the bridges are in danger of collapsing. He said the assessment overestimates "by many magnitudes" the bridge's integrity, even though those who put together the assessment consider it "functionally obsolete."Mulligan, wearing a homemade halo, also referenced movies in which an angel lurks near a bridge before it collapses and said he is that angel for the Charles Dana and Anna Hunt Marsh bridges.Domenic Poli can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 802-254-2311, ext. 277. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoli_reformer.
I plead guilty to a Class B misdemeanor of Criminal Mischief today. They made me pay $1300 dollars to the state for restitution. I was also also fined $1000. Don’t have to pay it as long as I stay outside 100 feet of the bridges except for normal traveling and refrain from committing serious crime for a year.