US Cities Crackdown on Occupy Protesters After Allegations of Assault

Occupy San Deigo

Source: Occupy San Diego

Last week saw an escalation of police presence and involvement in various Occupy movements around the United States, most notable in Nashville, San Diego, and Chicago.

Chicago Sits In

Beginning on Sunday, 130 people were arrested at Occupy Chicago after refusing to leave Grant Park (the movements headquarters) after curfew.  The protesters were told to remove their tents and leave the park after its 11pm closing time, when they refused the police began makings arrests . Just one week prior another 175 protesters were arrested at Grant Park for a similar reason.

On Wednesday protesters led a peaceful march to the office of Mayor Rahm Emanuel (former Chief of Staff to the Obama administration) to demand he drop the charges against those arrested.  The protesters also sought to have public space mandated by the city so that they may protest legally.  A dialogue ensued when the 100 protesters performed a sit in at the mayor’s office and resulted in Mayor Emanuel later tweeting:

“Just got petitions from #OccupyChiago folks. Mayor’s deputy looks forward to setting up a mtg to sit down for a discussion….”

Curfew in Effect in Nashville

Early Friday morning police from the Tennessee Highway Patrol dispatched 75 state trooper’s to Occupy Nashville headquarters at Legislative Plaza where they made 29 arrests.  This is coming after Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam announced that there would be a 10 p.m. curfew imposed on the protestors at Legislative Plaza. The office of the Governor declared that the all parties involved in the Occupy protest would also need to take out a permit from the city for 65$ in order to make their protest legal.  According to city officials the curfew was prompted by allegations of lewd acts, theft, and assault taking place at the site.

Civic Plaza Clean Up

On Friday morning San Diego Police arrested 50 protestors at Civic Plaza.  San Diego’s Assistant Chief of Police Boyd Long said the arrests where prompted by allegation of unsanitary living conditions, excessive drug use, and abuse. Two weeks prior to the arrest the San Diego Police department had attempted to clear out Civic Plaza, making only two arrests, however as the weeks went by the protestors began re-populating the area.

Prior to the arrests the city had called on the help of the National Conflict Resolution Center in hopes of mediating the dispute and having the protestors vacate Civic Plaza without police intervention.  Over the weekend the San Diego police have barricaded Civic Plaza and are said to be cleaning the area.  According to city-officials once the cleanup is complete protestors are invited to return but they may not camp out.

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Categories: Occupy Montreal, Politics

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