A judge would not dismiss the criminal cases of almost 200 people charged with rioting the day of President Trump's inauguration.
Those charged claimed the indictment lacked particulars and said Washington, D.C., rioting laws did not consider people that were arrested for participating in political speech that the First Amendment covers, according to Buzzfeed.
Lynn Leibovitz, a District of Columbia superior court judge, issued an order that shut down motions to dismiss the charges on Thursday. The defendants will be tried in groups starting in November and continuing through 2018. Leibovitz heard the arguments in July.
The defendants claimed the indictment did not allege which acts of rioting each of the defendants allegedly committed. According to the charging document, all the defendants were lumped together as a group and the various acts of rioting, including breaking of store windows, were listed altogether and not attributed to specific defendants.
Even so, Leibovitz maintained the cases could move forward. In response, Leibovitz said these issues should be addressed at trial.
"It is well settled that persons who may intend political protest, but who become violent or who willfully incite violence or other conduct that creates a grave risk of injury to property and persons in the course of the protest, are not shielded from prosecution," she wrote.
Currently, 194 cases are still pending, and 19 defended pleaded guilty. All defendants face felony rioting and property destruction charges. Some face more charges.
On Jan. 20, police arrested 234 people during violent protests in Washington, D.C. Court filings indicate more than $100,000 in property damage took place.