Some Protesters Disrespect Land and Landowners, Farmers and Ranchers Say

ST. ANTHONY — On a clear, blue-sky day in October, seven or eight protesters showed up in the middle of Jared Ernst’s alfalfa field, unloading their horses without so much as a “by your leave.” Ernst went over to ask them what they were doing in his alfalfa field and was told they were here for the Dakota Access protest. Ernst told them that was fine, but he didn’t want them trampling his hay field.

“This is treaty ground,” Ernst says the older gentleman replied, “and you don’t have a right to be here.”

Two younger men ambled up, meanwhile, swinging lariats as they came.

Ernst turned slightly to make sure everyone could see the revolver at his hip. At that point the older gentleman waved the two younger ones away, and the seven or eight protesters left Ernst’s field. Ernst said plates on the vehicles identified them as from a reservation in South Dakota.

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