March 20, 2012 : City Councilors Urge Protesters Bill of Rights; Occupy Cincinnati Back in Business



Occupy Wall Street is urging a National Strike Day on May 1 in protest of what its calling police brutality employed by NYPD on this past weekend's demonstrators. Police tactics were protested yesterday during a Manhattan press conference attended by OWS activists who were joined by New York City City Councilors like Ydanis Rodriguez, who called for the enactment by the council of a “Protester's Bill of Rights.” For the general strike, participants are urged to stay at home and not spend money in NYC., Wall Street Journal Online has more details on the press conference

Occupy St. Louis is providing more details on the arrests that took place over the weekend, saying they were on a public sidewalk and retreating from the park when police moved in – interviews, accounts at

On Sunday night, Occupy Chicago activists launched a “march in solidarity” with those who were arrested and pushed around by cops in Zucotti Park and St. Louis' Compton Reservoir Heights over the weekend. ChicagoTribune

Occupy DC joined the legal wranglings by filing suit against MPD after claiming that their first, fourth, and fifth amendment rights had been violated when they were arrested on a sidewalk protesting alleged ties between alleged seat for hire CA rep Darrell Issa and Merrill Lynch. The “occupation” took place outside Merrill Lynch's offices on 15th Street NW near McPherson Square. Huff Post

Occupy Oakland aftermath / legal fall-out continues with the latest court-room drama : two protesters are suing the owner of a vehicle that struck them at a protest last November. from the driver who allegedly surged forward after one of the demonstrators pounded the hood of the car. The suit, brought by Lance Laverdure, 29, of Fremont and Margaret So, 36, of Oakland seeks unspecified damages.

In Tennessee, Occupy Chattanooga gets the bum's rush from the courthouse lawn as grounds crews under supervision from the Sherriff's office proceeded to move them out by “relocating their belongings” so the grass on the lawn could be re-seeded. Occupiers see the move as an excuse to move them out and are consulting with National Lawyers Guild attorneys on their next move – video available at

The fighting over tents in public spaces seems to grow tedious for both parties. Incidents like tents catching fire at Occupy Rochester likely will bolster public nuisance claims.

In truth, cops/cities' high-handed tactics and arrests make big news splashes but bog down over murky legalities as the cases go to court and occupiers fight back with donated legal help. In many instances, settlements are the order of the day. One such case is Cincinnati, where Occupy re-launches a 24/7 protest today as part of a settlement with the city to dismiss 300 charges and allow the group to peacefully re-assemble.

(Interesting to see what will happen when occupiers and their 99% breatheren figure out cops can't arrest (process) everyone, and cities decide to it's a waste of scarce resources to arrest/prosecute a movement. )

Philly cops seem to have got the memo : after much public bluster and threats against retired, now famous Police Captain Ray Lewis, they now say they won't prosecute the retiree for wearing his uniform at occupy demonstrations. According to the police commissioner's office “he's exercising his first amendment rights and we're fine with that.”

Lewis' former fraternal buddies in the police union, however, say he should be arrested for “impersonating a police officer” and are threatening him with expulsion.

Occupy UC-Davis forces closing of US Bank on UC-Davis Campus, apparently. Citing “chronic disruption of business” the bank's Senior Vice-President claims authorities have not done enough to stop protesters form blocking the door of the bank since January.

Finally, Shoreline Patch runs a second interview with one of the acquitted “Chase Five,” 31 year-old Sarah Svobodny, who goes deeper into the reasons that led her to join Occupy and focus with other Occupy Seattle activists on Chase Bank.