Peace Activist Dennis Apel Opts to Suspend Prison Diary

Writings Chronicled Life Inside from a Compassionate Viewpoint

North County peace activist Dennis Apel opted to suspend his diary entries written from the Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles, which have been running with some regularity and frequency online at The Santa Barbara Independent. Apel, who is serving a four-month sentence for nonviolent civil disobedience conducted last August during a demonstration in front of Vandenberg Air Force Base, was placed in a Segregated Housing Unit, known as the SHU, for 14 days. He was released Wednesday after an adjudicated hearing. A SHU cell is 7 feet by 11 feet. Apel shared this unit with another prisoner. They were allowed out of the cell for only one hour every day.

Apel is now back in the general population, where he shares a floor with 130 other prisoners.

Dennis Apel has been protesting at Vandenberg for over 20 years and has been arrested multiple times for encroaching across what’s known as “the green line” painted on the road in front of the base entrance. The “green line” was established by base commanders to keep demonstrators a designated distance from the camp entrance.

Apel crossed that line last August 8 at a demonstration marking the 70th anniversary of the Hiroshima atomic bombing. He was arrested without incident, along with two other protestors. Apel was sentenced to four months and entered prison on May 9. He is scheduled to be released September 2.

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Alvarado and Ford File for School Board

Mark M. Alvarado and Kate Ford registered to run for the Santa Barbara Unified school board.

Thousands Received DACA Relief After Lawsuits Filed

Renewal applications have totaled 117,446 since program suspension was overturned.

Bank Robbery Suspect Kills Self in Bathroom

[Update] The suspect in the Goleta Rabobank robbery has been identified as Keith David Goodwin, believed to ...

News-Press’ Found to Owe Union and Employees $2.2 Million

National Labor Relations Board puts money amount on employee losses since 2006.

Fire Starts Just West of Buellton

[Update] Vegetation fire starts on the 1000 block of Highway 246; Bobcat Springs on evacuation warning.