The Portland man who dressed up as tree and plodded through a busy city intersection is being represented by city councilor and environmental lawyer Jon Hinck, who on Thursday filed a not-guilty plea on his client’s behalf.
Asher Woodworth, 30, was arrested in October while dressed from head to toe in evergreen bows and charged with one count of obstructing a public way, a misdemeanor.
Police have arrested a man dressed as tree for blocking traffic on Congress Street…as God is my witness. pic.twitter.com/VUFQY6Vyv0
— TVTEDDY (@TVTEDDY) October 24, 2016
The whimsical performance art piece aimed to “bring attention to the everyday dances and social choreography that we execute without thinking,” Woodworth told BDN Portland after his release on bail. But it quickly drew the attention of law enforcement and went viral with national and international media coverage.
Hinck, who lost his bid for reelection to the City Council in November, is defending Woodworth free of charge, he said. The city councilor is a co-founder of Greenpeace USA but said the decision to defend the so-called tree-guy is simple and not environmentally motivated.
“He’s a good guy and deserves representation,” said Hinck. “I think my client hopes to be exonerated.”
Woodworth could not be immediately reached for comment.