Skagit County decides to again prosecute Oregon protester after an earlier jury failed to reach a verdict in pipeline-shutdown case

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MOUNT VERNON (AP)— Felony charges have been refiled against an Oregon man who tried to shut off an oil pipeline north of Seattle last fall to make a statement about climate change.

The Skagit Valley Herald says the charges were refiled against 60-year-old Kenneth Ward, of Corbett, in Skagit County Superior Court Wednesday, after a jury failed to reach a verdict Feb. 1.

Ward faces felony burglary and sabotage charges for the Oct. 11 incident in which he broke through a fence and turned a safety valve along the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline near Burlington. That pipeline carries crude oil from Canada to refineries in Washington.

During his trial, Ward admitted to breaking into the facility and turning a valve on the pipeline. He said he hoped to inspire a transition off fossil fuels.