In a surprise sweep in New York City, while many of the Occupiers were asleep, the New York City Police Department entered the Occupy Wall Street encampment at Zuccotti aka Liberty Park and cleared it out. In videos and still shots that are circulating online, NYPD can be seen using pepper spray and teargas to force the Occupiers to evacuate the public space.
It has been reported that all of the Occupiers' tents were torn down and the NYPD reportedly destroyed thousands of books in the encampment's library. All personal belongings are also said to have been destroyed. However, the city is reporting that the property removed from the park is being kept in storage, and that protesters can retrieve their belongings with a photo ID.
According to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the purpose of this sudden sweep was to inspect the park for safety violations and to clean up the park. But many Occupiers claim the only thing violating their safety is the police, whom they accuse of police brutality. Reports of sound canons being used by the police on the activists and several reports of serious injuries are being used to substantiate the Occupiers' claims.
As we approach the two month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, police departments across the country are shutting down Occupy encampments. Oakland, Phoenix, Portland, New York, and others are evicting the Occupiers. The suspicion in the movement is that the shutdowns are connected to the two month anniversary where it has been rumored that OWS planned to protest at the New York Stock Exchange.
The Associated Press reported that The National Lawyers Guild got an injunction that allows Occupy Wall St. protesters to return with tents to a New York City park.
The National Lawyers Guild (NLG), a national non-proﬁt legal and political organization of lawyers, legal workers, law students and jailhouse lawyers, represents progressive political movements and staunchly supports the people's interest over property interests.
NLG has setup legal hotlines for Occupiers in 19 different states.
Local NLG Occupy legal hotlines are available 24/7:
New York City: (212) 679-6018
Chicago: (773) 309-1198
Bay Area: (415) 285-1011
Miami: (786) 548-0911
Philadelphia: (267) 702-0477
Los Angeles: (323) 696-2299
Washington, DC: (202) 957 2445
New Orleans: (504) 875-0019
Baltimore: (410) 205-2850
Buffalo: (716) 332-4658
Minnesota: (612) 656-9108
Michigan: (313) 963-0843
Portland: (503) 902-5340
Boston: (617) 227-7335
Bethlehem: (267) 702-0477
Allentown, PA: (267) 702-0477
Delaware: (267) 702-0477
Harrisburg, PA: (267) 702-0477
Idaho: (208) 991-4324(991-IDAHO)
In a piece I wrote today, I mention that Occupy LA is still standing. This is day 45 for the Occupiers in Los Angeles. They are to be commended and so is the City Council and LA Police Department. Let's hope Los Angeles doesn't follow the pack.