In what has become a pattern of harassment and intimidation, the San Francisco Police Dept. once again rushed into the OccupySF Federal Reserve Protest in the dark of night, this time arresting six peaceful protesters, confiscating tents and equipment, and creating panic and confusion.
OccupySF protester Michael Carisoza was part of a group standing peacefully with arms linked at 101 Market St. when the police arrived:
“The police attacked Janice, age eighteen, and of petite stature. Two of them grabbed her. We were linked together. They grabbed her and picked her up off the ground. The old woman next to me and I fell to the ground.”
James Jennison, an HIV-positive protester, was sleeping in his tent when the police drove him out:
“They took away my home and the shelter I need to stay healthy. This was illegal seizure of property and a rebuke of my first amendment rights.”
Sean Semans, an OccupySF liaison to the city, was sleeping when he was suddenly awakened and arrested:
“I was sleeping and I didn’t even get a chance to get out of my sleeping bag. I woke up to a cop straddling over my sleeping bag. I started tying my shoes and he just grabbed me.”
OccupySF protester Prince Jerrick was inside his tent when the police moved in:
“The riot cops passed by us and one said ‘get out or get arrested.’ We told him we were getting out and he instructed us to put our hands in the air as we crossed the street or else he would hit us.”
This police raid is an infringement on OccupySF’s rights of free speech and assembly and is part of a larger disruptive pattern that includes DPW’s ongoing enforcement of arbitrary rules and codes.
OccupySF individuals will be speaking to the press later today, Sunday Nov. 20, at 3:30pm at Justin Herman Plaza.