Canadian SF Writer Found Guilty

March 20th, 2010 | by Sqotty |

Last December I began following the case of Peter Francis Watts, a Canadian Science Fiction writer (heretofore virtually unknown) arrest for assaulting a U.S. law enforcement officer at the U.S.-Canadian border. Although I haven’t been blogging about it since the original incident began, I have been monitoring it. I also seem to recall making a bet with myself as to whether Watts would actually show up for his trial. Well, he did show he had the stones to appear for the trial on March 16th (he failed to appear in court on March 5th, but that is another story that was resolved in his favor).

The Port Huron Times Herald has done an excellent job of covering the trial; since Watts is a Science Fiction writer and some in the SF Fandom community rallied (but not I) around Watts, drawing international attention to the case, this was a good thing on the part of the Times Herald.

There have been other bloggers covering the case, both supportive of Watts, and some supportive of Law Enforcement. Kudos go to the blog “Have Satellite Truck, Will Travel” for having the first posting on the verdict handed down by the jury: Guilty! Fannish Moonbats will, no doubt, cry foul, or fowl. Or whatever.

From rifters (if you want to read his profanity laced blog, power to you, but I am not linking to it):

rift1
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“TANJ literally.” For those not in the know, TANJ is a term coined by Larry Niven and means “There ain’t no justice”. Ironic that this would be used on rifters as Watts has railed against Niven (and Pournelle) as being a fascist. Also, the way the poster is using TANJ comes across as though he thinks that the trial and conviction was a railroad job.

Here’s another real gem:

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Someone needs to tell this guy that the U.S. has a lot of foreigners in the prison system. They are called criminals. Let’s not forget that there are Americans in various foreign prisons, like Mexico and various European countries, and they are there for a reason: they broke the law.

Watts is expected to appear in court on April 26th for sentencing. I am unable to ascertain if Watts is to remain free on bond and allowed to return to Canada prior to sentencing. If he is allowed to remain free, will he actually show up in court on next month? Will he apologize to his 15 or so fans for letting them down? We’ll just have to watch and see.

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