Two Northampton residents arrested over cherry tree controversy

Hampshire County

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The cherry trees are gone on Warfield Place following two arrests on Friday. But now, residents are looking for answers from the city of Northampton.

Katie Young and her wife were both arrested climbing up the trees to stop them from being chopped down. She told me the criminal charges were dropped at her arraignment this morning, but the fight continues.

“I’m not happy or unhappy that the road is going to get paved,” said Katie. “It’s about the process and the way people were treated.”

She said neighbors weren’t told which day the trees would come down. She only found out when her car parked legally on the street was being towed. While construction crews were on Warfield, neighbors said a lawyer was filing a temporary restraining order.

Katie told 22News, “I didn’t know what to do so I simply hopped in a tree. I was trying to get them to listen to the idea that they needed to wait until a judge ruled and then if the judge ruled then they could cut the trees down. All we wanted was [to] process.”

Katie, Lois, and Oliver said that’s what they were trying to tell the police.

“I told them the TRO had been issued. And they said they didn’t know anything about that,” said Lois Ahrens and Oliver Kellhammer.

A statement put out by the Mayor’s Office following Thursday’s tree removal said in part, “Shortly after the crews arrived, several residents attempted to disrupt the work and additional police units were called to the project site. The DPW has conducted an unprecedented level of communication and neighborhood engagement with Warfield Place residents about this project…”

Lois and Oliver told 22News their next step is to try and get a permanent restraining order issued.

22News contacted Northampton Police to see what charges the neighbor could be facing but haven’t heard back as of news time.

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