Why climate activist is giving it away
THE lawyer for a teenage activist repeatedly arrested while protesting for Extinction Rebellion has told a court he has stopped attending the events because he realised they weren't working.
Connor Brooks, 19, faced court today over his involvement in two protests, one in which he glued himself to Brisbane's Victoria Bridge, and one in which he and others locked themselves by the neck to fencing set up on Eagle St, causing mass transit delays in both cases.
But Brooks, who has also previously faced court for contravening a direction during a third Extinction Rebellion protest, today claimed through his lawyer that he was no longer attending the regular protests.
"Your Honour, he has instructed, and certainly that would be supported by the fact that he hasn't continued to be charged further, that he realised that there are other ways to support what he sees as a very important message that don't involve getting arrested and he has to that end stopped going to meetings because he realises that it's not really working," Legal Aid lawyer Caroline Hunter said.
The court heard Brooks - a full-time university student studying journalism and environmental science who works part time as a pizza delivery driver - was arrested on September 12 after he and a woman glued their hands to the road on Victoria Bridge, blocking traffic and causing significant delays.
After police used acetone to detach the pair, they attempted to arrest Brooks, who became dead weight and had to be caught by the police officer so he didn't fall.
He was charged with obstructing police and causing an obstruction as a pedestrian and pleaded guilty to both offences today.
Brooks also pleaded guilty to a second offence of obstruction as a pedestrian in relation to an incident on October 2, in which he and five other Extinction Rebellion protesters erected temporary fencing on Eagle St and locked themselves to the fences with bike locks around their necks to block traffic.
Brisbane Magistrates Court heard Brooks had one entry on his criminal history for contravening a police direction on July 31 during another Extinction Rebellion protest, where he and a number of others were on an inner-city Brisbane street and refused police directions to move on.
His lawyer Ms Hunter said Brooks was 18 at the time of the offences and was now 19 and in his second year of studying the dual degree at Queensland University of Technology.
She said he had spent several hours in the watchhouse as a result of the arrests.
He was fined $1000 for the three incidents and no conviction was recorded.