Fort Devens Colonel Jails Army AWOL
Specialist Fourth Class John D. Rollins, AWOL from the Army since November 12, was arrested yesterday at Fort Devens as he passed out leaflets describing his sanctuary at Brandeis University.
"The military shows its fear of any organized movement," Rollins said before his arrest. "They can break individuals, but they can't break a movement," he added.
After a 15-day sanctuary at Brandeis, Rollins decided to pursue his protest of the military by personally going to Fort Devens. Approximately 150 Brandeis students entered the post with him.
Colonel Leon D. Sexton, the Provost Marshall, ordered the students off the Fort Devens grounds. As they began to leave the post, Sexton personally apprehended Rollins. Sexton refused to comment on the arrest.
Preparation for the sanctuary at Brandeis originated November 2 with a campus-wide meeting to discuss the concept of a sanctuary. At that meeting, the students voted to establish a sanctuary and to set up a Steering Committee.
Rollins's sanctuary began on December 4, when Brandeis students stayed with him in Mailman Hall, a recreation building. David Kelman, a member of the Sanctuary Community which supported Rollins said, "We were expecting a bust all along. But then it became evident that they wouldn't bust us until the vacation because they didn't want a confrontation."
On December 16 Rollins began to attend classes and eat in the Brandeis dining room. Marty Janowitz, a member of the Steering Committee, said that Rollins no longer confined himself to Mailman Hall because prospects for an immediate bust had dimmed.
Members of the Sanctuary Committee announced late yesterday afternoon their plans to retain possession of Mailman Hall.
Karl Springer, a sanctuary organizer, said, "At the end of it, we have a functioning committee with a political basis to it."