Latest developments in the Occupy protests

AP News
Posted: Nov 03, 2011 5:07 PM
Latest developments in the Occupy protests

Some of the latest developments in the Occupy protests taking place in cities across the world:


A massive anti-Wall Street demonstration in downtown Oakland turned violent overnight Thursday, resulting in more than 80 arrests.

On Wednesday, about 7,000 people gathered near City Hall as part of a mostly peaceful strike. The crowd then marched to the Port of Oakland, where they blocked entrances and forced a shutdown of the nation's fifth-largest port.

After most people went home, violence broke out downtown. Police reported protesters vandalizing properties, lighting bonfires in the street and hurling explosives at officers. Police say protesters threw concrete chunks, metal pipes and Molotov cocktails. But officers left the camp intact.

Police fired bean bags and used tear gas to subdue the crowd.

On Thursday morning, graffiti covered a number of businesses around the City Hall plaza. Some windows also were broken, and debris littered the street.

At a coffee shop next to the plaza, workers worked to replace the shattered windows Thursday morning. On the glass, someone taped a note that said "Actions not done by the people. Sorry."

Other Occupy protesters on Thursday condemned the violence of the demonstrators who clashed with police.

In downtown Los Angeles on Thursday, about 100 nurses and supporters marched in a call for a tax on Wall Street financial transactions.

The members of National Nurses United and the California Nurses Association are wearing red T-shirts saying "An Economy for the 99 Percent."

The march and rally are part of a series of events that labor unions are holding in conjunction with the G20 summit in France.

The nurses say a financial transaction tax could annually raise as much as $350 billion that could be spent on health care, schools and job creation.


Denver supporters of the Occupy Wall Street movement said Thursday they're temporarily moving their protest location out of respect for a Veterans Day parade and will march in front of downtown banks this weekend.

Protesters have been stationed across the street from the state Capitol for weeks, but group members said they'll move Saturday to give space for the parade honoring veterans in Civic Center Park.

Documentary filmmaker Michael Moore planned to visit the protesters in front of the state Capitol on Thursday.


The Occupy Atlanta movement got a boost Thursday from the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who told protesters at a homeless shelter that their efforts are an extension of the struggle he helped lead for civil rights in America.

Jackson urged the protesters to keep up the fight and to focus their anger on economic and social disparities, not City Hall.

"Do not let difficult times break your spirits," Jackson said. "In all things, keep your eyes on the prize. Renew your faith, keep your hope alive and victory is assured."

Jackson is in Atlanta participating in a conference with his Rainbow/PUSH Coalition and said the organization shares many of the concerns of the Occupy movement. He also has visited with protesters in other cities around the country, including New York, Chicago and Detroit.


Dozens of shouting Occupy Chicago protesters disrupted Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's speech to the Union League Club of Chicago.

The Chicago Tribune reports that ( ) Walker had been speaking for just a few minutes Thursday morning when about 50 protesters began shouting in a room where about 300 people had gathered for the event.

Protesters' chants included "Union busting, it's disgusting" and "We are the 99."

The Tribune says the protesters are backed by unions that oppose the Republican governor's efforts to curb collective bargaining rights for Wisconsin's public employees. Walker is the target of a recall effort.

Walker stood silently during the shouting, and protesters left after about 10 minutes.


Police arrested three people early Thursday while evicting Occupy Omaha protesters from a parking lot near downtown.

The Omaha Police Department said officers made loudspeaker announcements at around 4 a.m. to ensure the nine people on the property heard and had a chance to leave before being arrested for criminal trespass on city property.

Two of the people immediately refused to leave. A third person later sat in the middle of the lot and said he was staying.

All three were cooperative as they were arrested and taken a few blocks away for booking into the county jail, police said.


Sixteen people were arrested early Thursday at the Occupy Rochester protest in a downtown park.

The demonstrators face charges of trespassing and violating the city's park law that prohibits people from being on the property after 11 p.m.

Since Oct. 28, police have made 50 arrests at the park, where the Occupy Rochester group gathers daily.

Mayor Tom Richards says there are no sanitary facilities in the park and it's not designed for people to spend the night.

In lower Manhattan, 17 Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested Thursday at Goldman Sachs' headquarters.

Many of the protesters were carried off by police after refusing to move.

Several hundred activists marched from Zuccotti Park a few blocks away. Officers flanking them had handcuffs strapped to their waists.

At the Goldman Sachs building, police demanded that the protesters get off the private pavement in front of the entrance. Most did. But the rest sat down and refused to walk.

Also in New York City, more than 50 people arrested at an Occupy Wall Street march rejected offers Thursday to get disorderly conduct cases dismissed by staying out of trouble for six months, saying they wanted trials on what some called unjustified arrests.

Prosecutors say the demonstrators blocked traffic and prevented pedestrians from getting by. But many of the protesters say the disorderly conduct charges weren't justified. They say they stayed on the sidewalk, took care to leave a path for others to get through and followed police instructions.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg cited unconfirmed reports Thursday that Occupy Wall Street protesters are allowing crimes to go unreported and are instead chasing wrongdoers out of their park encampment. He declined to say whether the information could be grounds for police to forcibly evict protesters from the site.

"Instead of calling the police, they form a circle around the perpetrator, chastise him or her and chase him or her out into the rest of the city to do who knows what to who knows whom," Bloomberg said, though he noted the city was uncertain of the reports' accuracy. "If this is in fact happening, and it's very hard to get good information, it is despicable."

Protester Justin Stone-Diaz said he knew of two sexual assaults after which the female victims refused to file charges, leaving their fellow protesters _ and the police _ unable to take further action. The protesters gave the police department's liaison detailed information about the incidents, he said.


Police arrested 13 protesters with the Occupy Tulsa movement on Wednesday for violating a curfew at a park in the city's financial district.

Demonstrators said Thursday that the 23 arrests in the past two days, some of which involved officers using pepper spray, only made them more resolute to keep returning to the park.

Several protesters who observed Wednesday night's arrests said authorities appeared to handle the situation in a subdued fashion and didn't flash pepper spray at occupiers.


More than 100 Occupy Pittsburgh protesters marched through parts of the city Wednesday night and briefly obstructed traffic while chanting slogans against police and brutality at similar protests in other cities.

The marchers didn't have a permit and briefly disrupted traffic before heeding officers' orders to move out of the street, police said. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that more than 10 police cars and motorcycles were used to control the group near the University of Pittsburgh campus. Cmdr. George Trosky tells the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review there were no arrests or reports of damage.


The city of Providence on Wednesday decided to postpone plans to ask a court to evict members of Occupy Providence who have been camping in a downtown park for more than two weeks.

Public Safety Commissioner Steven Pare told The Associated Press that a lawyer for the activists asked the city to delay initiating any legal action until next week.

Pare says Mayor Angel Taveras, who has called a permanent encampment at Burnside Park unsafe and unwise, has agreed.


Members of Occupy Nashville delivered a letter to Gov. Bill Haslam on Thursday saying they want to collaborate with him "to achieve the best possible outcomes."

One protester presented the letter to an office secretary after reading it out loud. Haslam was having a meeting in his interior office and didn't meet with the protesters, according to his spokesman.

Protester Megan Riggs told reporters after presenting the letter that "it was just a gesture of goodwill to communicate to him ... that we want to be good neighbors."