TMT protesters’ court appearances spark brief moments of levity

  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Abel Simeona Lui holds a conch shell he blew from the courtroom gallery when his case was called Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Thirty Meter Telescope protesters, attorneys and others wait in the hallway for the courtroom to open Friday morning.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Richard DeLeon turns to talk to his attorney, Melody Parker, Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Walter Ritte Jr. returns to the courtroom gallery at the conclusion of his hearing Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Loretta Ritte returns to the courtroom gallery at the conclusion of her hearing Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Desmon Haumea returns to the courtroom gallery at the conclusion of his hearing Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Pualani Kanaka'ole-Kanahele appears Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Maxine Kaha'ulelio turns to her attorney, Aaron Wills, Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Daycia-Dee Chun appears with attorney Francis Alcain Friday in Hilo District Court.
  • JOHN BURNETT/Tribune-Herald Deborah Lee holds a kahili Friday outside Hilo District Court.

It was mostly business as 28 protesters of the Thirty Meter Telescope project, mostly kupuna, or elders, made their initial court appearances today in Hilo District Court on obstruction charges for blocking construction trucks and workers from scaling Maunakea to start construction on July 17.