Occupy Wall Street protestors beginning at just past 1:00 AM Tuesday morning were evicted by hundreds of New York City police — many in riot gear — in conjunction with the New York Sanitation and Fire Departments. Police arrested countless protestors, along with at least two members of the New York City Council, and members of the media and credentialed press, who were barred from reporting the raid. Huge dumpsters were filled with tents, laptops, tarps, food, books, and many other personal belongings, and carted away, only to be replaced immediately with other dumpsters in succession.
Twitter proved to be an excellent source of immediate details, along with there Live Stream video feed from Zucotti Park. Sadly, most mainstream media outlets did not report from the site.
The New York Times reported,
The mayor’s office sent out a message on Twitter at 1:34 a.m. saying: “Occupants of Zuccotti should temporarily leave and remove tents and tarps. Protesters can return after the park is cleared.”
The police move came as organizers put out word on their Web site that they planned to “shut down Wall Street” with a demonstration on Thursday to commemorate the completion of two months of the beginning of the encampment, which has spurred similar demonstrations across the country.
The move also came hours after a small demonstration at City Hall on Monday by opponents of the protest, including local residents and merchants, some of whom urged the mayor to clear out the park.
Before the police moved in, they set up a battery of klieg lights and aimed them into the park. A police captain, wearing a helmet, walked down Liberty Street and announced: “The city has determined that the continued occupation Zuccotti Park poses an increasing health and fire safety hazard.”
Additional reports, some unconfirmed, state:
- A New York Times reporter was arrested.
- A New York City Council member, Ydanis Rodriguez, was arrested around 2:30 AM, and was “bleeding from the head,” reportedly because of NYPD attacks.
- The New York Times reported that NYPD told protestors “the nearly two-month-old camp would be ‘cleared and restored’ before the morning and that any demonstrator who did not leave would be arrested.” However, protestors reported they were kicked out and when attempted to retrieve their personal property they were not allowed.
- 200 people were in the park when the police began their raid.
- Protestors throughout the evening chanted, “The whole world is watching, the whole world is watching,” and ”You can’t evict an idea.”
- The Guardian reports, “There is no apparent disorder, though police say they have made 15 arrests.” MSNBC reported 40 arrests.
- The New York Observer reported, “Here with an NBC cameraman who’s also not being allowed to pass “Our live truck can’t even get through.”
- Local area subways were shut done, purportedly in conjunction wit “planned maintenance.”
- Some claimed nearby cell phone towers were shut down.
- Village Voice reporter Rosie Gray stated via Twitter: “Me: ‘I’m press!’ Lady cop: ‘not tonight’.”
- Lawyer and LGBT activist Yetta Kurland said via Twitter:
- “Bulldozer with blad[e] down with over 35 cops rolling down Broadway.”
- Reports that our District Leader
#PaulNewell and our Councilmember #Ydanis Rodriguez arrested and reports they have been beaten. #OWSraid
- I will never forget the sound of these helicopters above us as this unfolds
- Report: “6 people with U locks around neck in kitchen tent. If they are moved their necks will break”
- Reporter Jared Malsin was reportedly arrested.
- NYPD closed the airspace above Zucotti Park so news helicopters could not film or report.
- NYPD “trashed 5,554 books.”
- NYPD used pepper spray and sawed down trees.
- NYPD used sound assault equipment known as LRAD.
- Supposedly $60,000 in cash donations was in the park and is missing. You can donate at: http://occupywallst.org/donate
- The park was reportedly tear gassed
- Reuters live blogged the assault.
(Image, top, via Newyorkist)
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