Kennecott Protesters Evicted and Arrested

Arrests today in the standoff between environmental protesters and the Kennecott Eagle Mine.

State Police say 6 protesters were asked to leave the Eagle Rock location early this morning.

Four of them voluntarily left the encampment, and two did not.

One of those two, Charlotte Loonfoot, told us she was fasting on Eagle Rock as part of a sacred ceremony when police surrounded the site and dragged her out of there.

15 law enforcement officials moved in this morning in a tactical maneuver to remove the protesters.

Kristi Mills of Save the Wild U.P. says she and other protesters are still questioning whether Kennecott’s lease on the state land is legal.

Officers were expected to stay at Eagle Rock through the afternoon to provide security for the crew installing the fence along the Kennecott property line.

All this comes after two incidents Sunday afternoon at Eagle Rock — one a verbal threat, one an alleged assault against Kennecott employees.

Both incidents are still being investigated.

Protesters began camping at the base of Eagle Rock April 23.

The protest has grown over the past month, with protesters staying at the site overnight.

After the police action at Eagle Rock today, word traveled fast among the protesters.

A dozen or more others showed up at the site outside Big Bay by 11:30.

In downtown Marquette, another few dozen protesters were looking for public support.

Loonsfoot and one other protester are charged with trespassing, and they’re both free tonight on a personal recognizance bond.

Both are due back in court June 1st.