Police Attack Occupy Denver In bid to end the occupation

13 11 2011

by Nathan Revercomb

After a day of marches through the downtown area of Denver, Colorado. Police moved in to attack the Occupy Denver encampment and end the occupation. The Denver Police Department Issued warnings on Thursday, November 10th, for occupiers to remove all obstructions from the sidewalks and to remove all personal belongings from Civic Center Park or face a raid.

This comes, after several raids that have made camping in both Civic Center Park and Lincoln Park (across Broadway)virtually impossible. Both previous actions on behalf of the Mayor and Governor forced the occupiers to camp under blankets and tarps without the benefit of tents along the sidewalk adjacent to Civic center Park. Both Previous actions coupled with the harsh cold of winter have gradually been reducing the numbers of full-time occupiers at Occupy Denver as well as several arrests.

The Police claim the the action last night was in the interest of public safety, but it is clear that the intention is to deal a death blow to the Occupy Denver movement. This has been illustrated by at least one illegal police sponsored assault on sleeping occupiers in the nights prior to last night’s attack.

The time line as follows was taken from the Occupy Denver website:

5:01pm- It looks like this raid is imminent. This is the “largest police presence ever” for one of the smallest gathering of protesters. It seems at minute they are going to bust in and take everything out.

5:11pm- Police tape is up around the perimeter.

5:44pm- Protesters are chanting at police. Police continue to move. Unsure if chemical weapons have been used yet.

6:27pm- Police a chanting “MOOVE BACK” while the protesters rebut with “PEACEFUL! PEACEFUL! PEACEFUL!”

6:45pm- Pepper bullets and tear gas launched into crowd.

7:17pm- Protesters on the move up the 16th Street Mall, currently at Arapahoe and 16th. I can’t confirm, but I believe they are attempting to move camp to Skyline Park. There is a police presence following them and “boxing” them in.

If you have Occupations materials from the Civic Center Park, please stay tuned for further updates on where to take those materials.

7:32pm- Police are surrounding a group of protesters on the block of 16th and Champa. They are trying to head to 15th and Arapahoe. If you have contact with people down there, please tell them to stay together and stay out of the alleys.

7:55pm- Protesters need water and supplies. Please help with what you can. I imagine there are medics on the scene and need medic supplies. There was also an announcement to give to the DABC for the bail fund.

The police continue to pursue the protesters.

8:01pm- Protesters are now moving down the street, not to Skyline Park, on a “confirmed” report that the Mayor Michael Hancock is down the street at 15th and Larimer.

8:15pm- Mayor Hancock has been found at Starz Film Festival. Occupiers are chanting and letting him hear it, since he’s tried to shut Occupy Denver off.

8:20pm- Live feeds lost after entering a parking garage at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Last words were that riot cops have surrounded them on all sides.

8:29pm- The march is heading to the “Justice” center at 1331 Cherokee st.

8:44pm- 16 arrests confirmed. The march is headed to the courthouse by Civic Center Park.

9:42pm- Protesters have been walking around to different locations. The group was split and more arrests were made. At every turn, the police stalk them with several cruisers and SUVs. It seems the police are vigilant in trying to break off small groups. Considering their warning, they seem very interested in squashing Occupy once and for all.

This morning, it was confirmed that a total of 17 protesters were arrested in all. Though, the police claim to have not fired tear gas, they did use batons and they did fire rubber bullets which are large steel balls covered in a thin coating of rubber on unarmed and peaceful demonstrators. Their claim of not having used gas at Civic Center Park has been staunchly contested by many protesters that were present at the attack.

Later, the police told 7 news that the reason for the attack was that “dangerous anarchists” wanted to start trouble, forgetting their reasons announced just Thursday.

FOR MORE UPDATES ON THE OCCUPY DENVER SITUATION, PLEASE VISIT OCCUPYDENVER.ORG

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