“Leah Lynn Plante cooperated with the grand jury. The first time she cooperated was in her first grand jury appearance. She confirmed that she knows Dennison, another grand jury subpoenut. Dennison released a statement noting this was insignificant knowledge, as they had posed together for resister press photos.
Leah delayed the grand jury long enough that day that she could not have a contempt hearing before the courthouse closed. She was re-subpoenaed. At her next court date, she declined to answer any questions and was taken into custody. Less than a week after she was incarcerated, Leah requested a way out of prison from her lawyer. Her lawyer returned with a subpoena for October 17, 2012. She entered that grand jury, spoke, and was released from prison that day.
The exact content of what Leah said is unknown. After leaving prison, she told very few people she was out. Leah did not inform known targets of the investigation of her release. When she did let people know that she was free, she asked for space from any questions. Those who did ask questions were rebuffed and told that she needed to recover before she could talk about what happened.
After delaying giving any answers to people, Leah left Portland. Most people do not know where she went. She has since made one statement to CAPR, in which she said safety concerns prevented her from saying what happened during the grand jury at which she appeared.
Leah did tell people that she answered “an anarchy sign” when asked what a circle-A means and described some man as “a neo-Nazi” who had attempted to infiltrate anarchist circles before being outed. According to Leah, when the prosecutor asked her about various things, she answered “I don’t know,” or “I don’t remember.” Beyond those questions, what Leah said remains unknown. Due to the secrecy of grand jury proceedings, short of information coming out in discovery, there is no definitive way of knowing what was said in the grand jury chamber.
Whether or not Leah provided information substantial to indictments, her cooperation facilitated the grand jury investigation. Frequently stated in grand jury resistance trainings is that answering even “harmless” seeming questions can have highly damaging outcomes. What appears insignificant could be an essential link in the prosecutor’s case. Further, stating “I don’t know” or “I don’t remember” could potentially open you up to perjury charges. Finally, the State had, until October 17, encountered a mostly solid wall of resistance. Their strategy had failed to break solidarity among anarchists. In coercing testimony from Leah, the State damaged the credibility of those who publicly resist.
This point—that even limited cooperation is harmful—cannot be emphasized enough. Saying anything to a grand jury is a problem. Say nothing.”