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Published January 06 2012

Locked-out American Crystal Sugar workers say they were bumped by vehicles while picketing

MOORHEAD – No charges were filed in two morning incidents where locked-out American Crystal Sugar workers or their supporters say they were bumped by vehicles as they picketed outside the north Moorhead processing plant.

Moorhead Police Lt. Tory Jacobson said that in both cases, groups of 20 to 30 picketers continued to walk in front of vehicles that were entering or exiting the plant.

Police were told that in each case, as vehicles tried to inch through the picket lines, that the vehicles bumped into picketers, Jacobson said.

No injuries were reported in either incident, Jacobson said.

Jacobson said police respect the picketers’ right to act as pedestrians in that area, but they are also there to ensure that traffic can safely enter and exit the plant.

“We’re concerned with the practice and the safety of what they’re doing,” Jacobson said. “We need to have everyone be aware of the danger there.”

About 1,300 union workers for Crystal Sugar have been locked out since Aug. 1.