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Judge reverses bail denial for activist who exposed breast in Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — After initially ordering a New York woman who mimicked Virginia’s seal by exposing her breast outside the Capitol to be held without bail, a Virginia judge has agreed to release her.

Attorney David Baugh tells The Washington Post that Richmond General District Court Chief Judge Lawrence B. Cann III agreed to release 45-year-old Michelle Sutherland on a personal recognizance bond Thursday. She would have to pay $1,500 if she doesn’t show up for her March 21 court date.

Sutherland was arrested on an indecent exposure charge during a Monday protest in support of the Equal Rights Amendment. News outlets report that Cann said he didn’t understand the charge stemmed from a political protest when he ordered Sutherland jailed Tuesday.

Advocates say holding someone without bail for a nonviolent misdemeanor is unusual.

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Information from: Richmond Times-Dispatch, http://www.richmond.com

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