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9 arrested for pro-Palestinian protests face first court hearing

The nine people arrested Monday evening at the University of Florida during protests criticizing the war in Gaza made their first court appearances Tuesday morning.

Six identified themselves as students, one as a teaching assistant and two as employees of Target during a first appearance hearing at the Judge Stephan P. Mickle, Sr. Criminal Court House.

Most of the charges included failure to obey police or fire department, wearing a hood or mask on public property and resisting without violence. Several students were ordered not to return to UF or to have any contact with the institution.

Alex Segal attended the hearing in support of her granddaughter, Tess Segal, a UF student who was arrested.

“She’s brilliant. Obviously, she has a very high social consciousness. And she has both worked and volunteered in the community here since she moved up here to go to school,” Segal said.

It’s not clear whether Segal or other students violated a list of rules sent out to students by the university last week. Students found in violation of those rules could face suspension or banishment from campus.

“Of course the family’s upset about her in case she gets kicked out of school because, you know, we’re invested here. Both her parents went to UF and everything,” Segal said.

Judge Susan Miller-Jones allowed all but one of the nine people arrested to be released from the Alachua County Jail. According to a police report, one student spat on a police officer. He’s facing a battery charge and is being held on a $5,000 bond.

Áine Pennello is a multimedia reporter and Morning Edition news anchor for the College’s Innovation News Center. She has a background in video news and documentary and most recently worked at WCBS Newsradio in New York City covering local news and the tri-state area. She has also reported internationally, freelancing from Paris and Berlin during the Syrian refugee crisis. During the Syrian Civil War, Pennello reported from the Golan Heights while on a reporting grant from the International Center for Journalists.