Comment: This article discusses my sit-in arrest in the UF Law School dean's office. Shortly before my arrest, I had had a trial date in Fort Myers on the bomb threat charge; and although I filed a motion about it, when I didn't show up for trial, a warrant was issued. Thus the arrest was for the warrant. I spent two days in the Alachua County jail and then was transported in a Lee County Sheriff's van back to Fort Myers. I went on hunger strike when arrested in the dean's office and continued it until there was a hearing date about 12 days later in Fort Myers. The hearing was in the morning but I didn't go to it because I was too sick from the hunger strike. However, that evening I was released from jail and a few days later I obtained a ride back to Gainesville, where I have been since.
"Lee County's version of Henry David Thoreau" is headed back to Lee County --- for now.
University of Florida police on Tuesday arrested Robert Francis Allston, 59, after a peaceful demonstration in the office of UF College of Law Dean Richard Matasar.
Allston said he wrote Matasar's predecessors three times asking for help in reforming the legal system but got no reply. So he staged a sit-in in Matasar's Office.
Three UPD officers arrested Allston in Matasar's office shortly after 5p.m., but not for refusing to leave.
Sgt. Melvin Smith said that following a warrants check, UPD officers learned that last week Lee County authorities had issued a warrant on felony charges relating to threatening a public official. Officers decided not to issue any new charges.
"He was very peaceful, didn't give us any problems. I didn't know what his protest was," Smith said. "The best I could get from the dean was he was protesting the legal system."
Prior to his arrest, Allston had visited The Sun and said that he was in Gainesville to seek university professors to join with him in a crusade to use social sciences to "rationalize" the law.
"Criminal law is punitive and moralistic," he said. "It should be pragmatic and businesslike."
A 1961 UF economics graduate, Allston said he had visited professors of sociology, psychology, criminology and law before going to the law school dean's office to be arrested. He brought along a copy of a Lee County newspaper article describing him as "Lee County's version of Henry David Thoreau."
The article said Allston had never been in trouble with the law until 1994, when he sent Lee County officials a philosophical tract titled "Notes on Institutionalized Corruption in Lee County." Part of it described how he could make a bomb, put it in a cheap briefcase and blow up the county building.
The article went on to say that Lee County authorities had attempted to deal with him by committing him to mental health facilities, but each time, psychiatrists said he didn't belong there; and he was released.
This Web page is in the Web site entitled LEGAL REFORM THROUGH TRANSFORMING THE DISCIPLINE OF LAW INTO A SCIENCE