SALT LAKE CITY — San Juan County Commissioner Phil Lyman’s criminal conviction over his protest ride through Recapture Canyon has been compared to another case from the other side of the political spectrum.
Tim DeChristopher was sentenced to two years in federal prison for sabotaging an oil and gas auction back in 2008. He was protesting the sale of energy development leases near some of Utah’s most famed landmarks in southeastern Utah. At DeChristopher’s trial and sentencing, activists staged protests outside the federal courthouse saying he was protecting the environment.
Some have noted that DeChristopher got two years in federal prison, while Lyman got 10 days in jail. Speaking to reporters on Friday, U.S. Attorney for Utah John Huber said DeChristopher was tried on felonies with a higher level of damage than Lyman, who was convicted of two misdemeanors.
Still, DeChristopher weighed in on the sentence for Lyman — particularly the judge’s order that Lyman can’t advocate for anyone to break the laws on federal lands. In tweets to FOX 13’s Ben Winslow, DeChristopher wrote: