Carrie Feldman, 20, was jailed in November for
refusing to testify about a 2004 break-in at the University of Iowa
By ABBY SIMONS, Star Tribune March 18, 2010
An animal rights activist jailed four months for
refusing to testify about a break-in at a
University of Iowa laboratory has been released.
A judge in Davenport, Iowa, signed an order
Thursday to release Carrie Feldman after the U.S.
Attorney for that region informed the court that
her grand jury testimony was "no longer necessary
the public interest" and asked that she no longer
be held in civil contempt of court, said her attorney, Jordan Kushner.
No further explanation was given for Feldman's
release. Friends and family members were expected to pick her up Thursday.
A call to U.S. Attorney Clifford Cronk in
Davenport was not immediately returned.
Feldman, 20, of Minneapolis, was jailed in Iowa
on Nov. 17 for refusing to appear before a grand
jury that was looking into the November 2004
break-in. The Animal Liberation Front released
video of themselves entering the lab, taking
hundreds of rats and mice, smashing computers and
dumping chemicals. Damages totaled $450,000.
Five years later, authorities subpoenaed Feldman
and her former boyfriend, Scott DeMuth, 22, also
of Minneapolis. Both were jailed for refusing to
testify, and a grand jury later indicted DeMuth
for animal enterprise terrorism. Feldman, who was
15 at the time of the break-in, said she knows
nothing about what happened. DeMuth says he's innocent.
Judges denied two appeals for Feldman's release
before Cronk's office asked that she be released.
"My belief is this is the end of this particular
matter for her," said Feldman's attorney, Bruce Nestor.
On Monday, FBI agents raided a Salt Lake City,
Utah, house where some animal rights activists
were purported to live. The agents were acting on
a search warrant issued in the same southern
district of Iowa where Feldman was held and
DeMuth was charged. The warrant authorized a
search for computers, photographs, cell phones
and documents "relating to animal enterprise terrorism."
Kushner said it's unclear whether information
gathered in that search led to Feldman's release.
Abby Simons • 612-673-4921