Court hearing for nine arrested during TMT protests draws crowd of about 200

JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Edleen "Aunty Tootsie" Peleiholani talks to the media following arraignment and not guilty pleas for her and eight other kupuna for misdemeanor obstruction Friday at the Hilo courthouse. Police arrested 38 individuals on July 17 for allegedly blocking Maunakea Access Road to prevent construction trucks and workers from scaling the mountain to build the Thirty Meter Telescope.

An overflow crowd of about 200 people packed a Hilo courtroom and an adjacent hallway as nine kupuna were arraigned this morning on charges they obstructed Maunakea Access Road on July 17 to prevent construction vehicles and workers from scaling Maunakea to build the Thirty Meter Telescope.