The first round of protesters arrested in NAACP-led demonstrations at the North Carolina legislature are heading to court the same day the group plans to hold its latest rally against the conservative policies of the GOP majorities.
The 17 protesters due in court Monday are expected to plead not guilty to misdemeanor charges of trespassing, failure to disperse and breaking legislative building rules. The other approximately 450 protesters arrested in seven weeks of demonstrations face the same charges.
NAACP legal adviser Irv Joyner says the group will contest charges on Constitutional grounds and on the evidence of each individual case.
Chapter president the Rev. William Barber will be among the 17 in court. He's calling for a mass rally with more arrests following the court date.