Occupy Wall Street Protesters Arrested in Solidarity March
The “Occupy” protests taking place across the country heated up as demonstrators in Oakland, Calif., who had been evicted from their camp returned amid heavy police presence while New York protesters were arrested in a clash with officers during a late-night solidarity march.
At least 10 people were arrested in New York late Wednesday, according to NY1, after several tussles broke out as protesters marched up from Zuccotti Park to Union Square in a show of solidarity with demonstrators in Oakland.
Wednesday night’s march began with a general assembly meeting where Occupy Wall Street protesters agreed to release some of their funds and some tents to the protestors in Oakland. The demonstrators then began marching from Zucotti Park around City Hall up Broadway and into the heart of New York’s Soho neighborhood to cheers — and some jeers of “get a job.”
The march quickly turned into a game of cat and mouse between the NYPD and protestors, some of whom were goading police with screams of “no justice, dirty pigs, cops come here.”
Several people were arrested as police unsuccessfully tried to keep protestors on sidewalks. Officers were able to keep demonstrators from marching across the Brooklyn Bridge.
Protestors removed rope lines which police had set up, and eventually the cops allowed them to march and they left the scene.
Once the march reached the West Village neighborhood police reappeared behind the protestors who began to splinter off into smaller groups until eventually the action died down.
While police showed restraint throughout Wednesday’s action, many residents of the neighborhoods which protesters marched through took issue with the NYPD rather than demonstrators. One local woman said that police cursed at her when she asked what was happening.
“It was very upsetting,” she told ABC News. “I asked if I could speak to somebody in charge who could respond to the community. There is such a thing as community policing, where people do respond. They actually used profanity.”
In Oakland Wednesday protesters returned to a relatively peaceful scene where for the previous 24 hours several violent clashes had broken out, leading police to repeatedly use tear gas to disperse crowds. Tuesday morning authorities forcibly removed the tent city in Frank Ogawa Plaza that had been their camp for several weeks.
Crowds grew steadily in Oakland throughout Wednesday and around 7:30 p.m. protesters began to knock down the fences that had been erected around the lawn at Frank Ogawa Plaza, according to ABC News Bay Area affiliate KGO. By 10:30 p.m. Oakland’s City Center BART Station had been blocked off by police.
A crowd of roughly 1,000 gathered at Frank Ogawa Plaza listened to speakers criticize city officials while urging the protesters to remain peaceful.
One protester told KGO early Thursday that demonstrators don’t view the police as their enemy.
“They don’t make the decisions and we know that and we look forward to them joining us in this effort because they are part of the 99 percent,” he said.
An Iraq war veteran that suffered a fractured skull as protesters and police scuffled Tuesday has become a figure for what demonstrators are saying is the brutality of Oakland’s police.
Though it is still unclear how U.S. Marine Scott Olson received the injury, Veterans for Peace, the group he attended the protest with, said that Olson was “shot in the head with a police projectile while peacefully participating in the Occupy Oakland march.” He is reportedly sedated at a local hospital and will be examined by a neurosurgeon.
Police Chief Howard Jordan said there will be a full investigation into the incident.
“It’s unfortunate it happened. I wish that it didn’t happen. Our goal, obviously, isn’t to cause injury to anyone,” Jordan said Wednesday afternoon.
Across the country the movement is showing no signs of slowing as camps are still popping up in numerous cities and protesters are continuing to push back on authorities.
With reporting by ABC News’ Seniboye Tienabeso and Enjoli Francis.