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Occupy Oakland Witness: Mercedes Driver “Got Frustrated And Hit The Gas”

by David Badash on November 3, 2011

in Civil Rights,Occupy Wall Street

Post image for Occupy Oakland Witness: Mercedes Driver “Got Frustrated And Hit The Gas”

Two Occupy Oakland protestors are expected to live after being hit by a Mercedes-Benz automobile driven by an as-yet unnamed driver. Witnesses reported that the car was attempting to get through the crowd of protestors when it first hit a young man, also as yet unnamed, and then, backing up, a young woman. Witnesses also report the driver of the Mercedes appeared to have lost patience and, as one said, “got frustrated and hit the gas.”

One witness, Chris Filippi, a reporter for San Francisco’s KCBS news who has been covering the Occupy Oakland protests, reported the following via Twitter late Wednesday evening (all times Eastern):

10:39 PM: #Occupyoakland protester hit by car at 11th and Broadway.

10:55 PM: 2nd victim of crash, a woman, being treated for a leg injury. Witnesses say she was hit when driver backed up after initial collision.

11:08 PM: Police take drivers information and allow him to leave. Crowd irate. They were chanting for his arrest. #Occupyoakland

11:14 PM: Dozens of protesters still at 11th in Broadway. Appear shocked by whet happened.

11:32 PM: No way to know. Taken away on stretcher into an ambulance. “@KristinHanes@chrisfilippiwhat’s the victim’s condition?”

11:34: Was blinking his eyes. Slight movement of right hand. “@ProducerMatthew@ChrisFilippi Did he look conscious?”

11:46 PM: Alive when he was driven off in ambulance. “@nicholasdances:@blogdiva @catherina_guate @dominique_e_ @chrisfilippi is protester dead?”

12:17 PM: @blogdiva I can only report what I saw. Both victims were alive when taken away.

Filippi also posted the above photo of the protestor lying on the ground in a pool of blood, with the silver Mercedes just feet away.

At 12:18 AM today KTVU reported, also via Twitter:

Highland hospital confirms pedestrians hit at 11th and Broadway have non life threatening injuries

The San Francisco Chronicle adds,

The incident happened when the driver was heading south on 11th and was blocked by streams of marchers walking along Broadway, witnesses said. He had a green light, but could not get through.

The driver “got frustrated and hit the gas,” said Nick Lucas, 25, of Berkeley. “He was getting pissed.”

The San Jose Mercury News reported,

“The man who is on the ground now hit the car, and then the driver pushed on the gas,” said Ayzia Robinson of Benicia.

The car was then surrounded by a mob of demonstrators as medics arrived on the scene.

“The guy who got hit by the car hit the hood of the car, and then the driver hit the gas,” said a witness who gave her name as Kareena. “This is a situation where you have two people with bad decision making skills.”

Occupy Oakland protestors had called a general strike that literally shut down the city of Oakland Wednesday, including the Port Of Oakland that officially was closed at 6:15 PM PT.

The tragic irony of a Mercedes-Benz — an icon of the 1% — hitting Occupy Oakland protestors has not gone unnoticed by us.

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