Occupy Capitol Hill | Pepper spray miscarriage, camp sex assault, high school says no recruiting

In addition to pounding rain and soaked camp conditions, Day 25 brings a small city’s worth of bad news for Occupy Seattle’s Pine at Broadway campers.

  • Protester claims SPD caused miscarriage: The Stranger’s Dominic Holden talked to the 19-year-old woman who says she suffered a miscarriage after she was pepper sprayed and kicked during a downtown protest last week. Jennifer Fox, a camper at Occupy’s SCCC takeover, tells Holden she is seeking legal counsel. “I was worried about it, but I didn’t know it would be this bad. I didn’t know that a cop would murder a baby that’s not born yet… I am trying to get lawyers.”
  • Camp sex assault: The Seattle Times has learned that police are investigating an apparent sex assault inside the camp Friday night. “A protester reported seeing a man she did not know leaving her tent. When she walked into the tent, she found a woman lying on the floor naked from the waist down,” the Times reports. The Times does not include details from camp organizers who are saying that the suspect is a homeless man who had been banned from the camp.
  • Area high school won’t allow Occupy recruiting: Don’t worry. Capitol Hill high school kids attending Garfield will be safe from any Occupy Seattle recruiting, reports CHS contributor Marlow Harris. Here’s the letter sent home to parents from the Garfield principal:

Garfield Families – Garfield high school wanted to make you aware of a nationwide group – Occupy Seattle that is currently residing close to the school campus. They are living in an abandoned building that is on 23rd Avenue. The building is in the 300 block just south of 313 23rd Avenue. Occupy Seattle recently tried to hand out pamphlets and recruit members on the high school campus. Security and police asked the group to leave. Garfield high school is working with the Seattle Police Department to make sure that the group is not allowed to come on campus and promote their ideas. We wanted families to be aware of the group’s presence close to the school campus. Sincerely, Ted Howard – Principal at Garfield High School

“We are asking our neighbors in Capitol Hill to show their support.  [There] have been a few negative outcomes from us being at Central, but we hope that the Capitol Hill community understands the difficulty in trying to construct a self-sustaining governed society from the ground up.  The fight for economic justice will not be easy.  But occupying public education is a good beginning.”

  • Butterfly everything: Our favorite take on the UC Davis casual pepper spray cop. How long until we see this stencil on Capitol Hill?

  • Subscribe and support CHS Contributors -- $1/$5/$10 per month

    42 thoughts on “Occupy Capitol Hill | Pepper spray miscarriage, camp sex assault, high school says no recruiting

    1. So why haven’t the cops dealt with the alleged attacker?

      At this point it sounds like Occupy is a victim of a criminal that is still threatening the Hill. Of course, that’s not newsworthy or anything…

    2. It’s far more stupid to shrug off police oversteps when this police department has had so many problems. People wonder why the SPD keeps doing this? Maybe it’s that part where people shrug and say “well, duh, that’s what they do” in a folksy aw, shucks way.

      Enough is enough.

    3. Putting a pregnant woman along with the 84-year old was a deliberate move from the protest organizers. The outcome would either be 1) Cops won’t pepper spray or 2) Cops will pepper spray and it will be an outrage. That protest was illegal, and they were asked twice to back down because they were obstructing traffic.

      RIP, little angel.

    4. “…we hope that the Capitol Hill community understands the difficulty in trying to construct a self-sustaining governed society from the ground up. The fight for economic justice will not be easy.”

      You’ve GOT to be kidding me! First of all, you can’t call yourself “self-sustaining” if you’re squatting on a college campus. But more to the point… I don’t personally know anyone who supports your presence on the hill (I’m aware that there are many commenter’s who are all for it, but I’m talking about myself and the people I interface with on a daily basis). I’m also confused about how creating a commune on Capitol Hill is going to fight for economic justice.

      I’ve read most of the comments on CHS related to the occupy movement and have resisted chiming in because it seems about as effective as herding kittens. It’s becoming more difficult to bite my tongue as the pedantic bullshit piles up. I do support some of the ideas behind this ‘movement’; but this campout isn’t going to change any of those things. If anything, you’re driving away potential supporters from donating their time and resources in the future.

      Time to reevaluate and start sleeping at home! A more targeted plan of action will work towards giving your demonstrations some credibility and, I would bet, more residents would be willing to participate. At this point your message is not being articulated enough to draw a response beyond an eye roll and a “what are they doing now?”

    5. Funny, I seem to remember numerous anti-brutality marches in the wake of John T. Williams’ murder that didn’t result in notable pepper spraying. In fact, compared to these protests things were pretty sedate in spite of how frequent and active the marches were.

      What’s different about marching against income inequality, poverty, forced homelessness and a dwindling education mandate in this country? I can’t seem to get that.

    6. So you’re honestly of the belief that Occupy protests should be attacked, then, all because of your own interpretation of a video of an event you weren’t present at?

      Interesting.

    7. Did SPD kick her? I haven’t heard any reports of officers kicking people. Especially pregnant women on the ground. This is a horrible circumstance, but isn’t it possible that putting yourself in a stressful situation probably wasn’t the best idea?

      The kicks probably weren’t kicks, but were the feet of other protestors knocking into her as they were taking cover from the pepper spray.

      Does she has any legal recourse? Probably not. The way the court will see it is that she was part of a group of people that was asked to disperse. They didn’t move. The police used pepper spray to break up the crowd. Does that mean this is the case? Maybe not, but the court will most likely see it that way. She wasn’t targeted. As much as it would be nice (for some people) to think that SPD deliberately sprayed a pregnant woman and an elderly woman, it’s more than likely not the case. These videos show them spraying into the crowds with no real targets.

      In any instance, I am sorry for your loss.

    8. The John T. Williams protestors worked with the city.

      That’s the difference.

      You can’t change things unless you try.

      Occupy city council chambers. Occupy county council chambers. If you believe that “occupying education” is something, then occupy UW/SU/SPU/etc lectures. Why is actually doing something so hard to figure out?

    9. Well said! I couldn’t agree more. The camps days are numbered. Also, if they dont shut it down before the holiday shopping season, you can damn well bet it will cost the small businesses in the PikePike area. Who wants to spend their holiday shopping dollars amidst squalor and stench

    10. You are aware of constant work with the SPD, right? We asked for an unaccompanied march Saturday and got one. Traffic was fine.

      And the Council? They passed a resolution and have been supportive.

      And schools? There are Occupy clubs on local campuses.

      And other gov? We’re going to Olympia to protest, rally and lobby.

    11. This is an example of how being homeless is a terrible situation for anyone, and not something that people choose because they are lazy.

      Sure, this poor woman’s assertions are all bullshit: 1) that she was kicked in the stomach by police, 2) that she miscarried as a result, 3) the risk to her unborn child from being at this protest was acceptable, 4) it’s OK to have unprotected sex while homeless, 5) it’s OK for a 19 year old to bring a child into the world when she has zero means of supporting it. The odds that the unborn child’s development was at risk from drug and alcohol use are also extremely high.

      The miscarriage and sexual assault stories only peripherally involves the Occupy movement–but they are common occurrences among the homeless. In spite of the miscarriage and the sexual assault, the Occupy camp has a net positive effect on both the lives of the homeless who have joined them and the community in general. For example, how about we as a society choose a little less profitability for the super rich and a little more resources for the organizations who are effective at helping the most vulnerable members of our society?

    12. Thought about this a lot, have you? Is the worldwide movement all bums, or is is just Seattle? I wonder what insights you might have to share with us about the Occupy camps in, say, Capetown or Mumbai or Sao Paulo…

    13. Too bad they don’t have Walgreens, movie theaters and college art supply stores anywhere else for me to spend my holiday shopping dollars. BTW, I’ve been to the farmer’s market every week since the camp moved in and experienced no unpleasant smells whatsoever.

    14. I don’t know how this movement could be stopped peacefully. It was designed as such that it will take force. It’s in almost every large and medium city in the US and we aren’t hearing anything except of a few incidences in New York, Portland, and of course Oakland.
      The tent occupiers themselves for the most part don’t know they are being used. Their leadership does, but the “useful idiots” on the ground, not so much.
      The home in the central district that has been “occupied” is not an isolated event. All the groups nationwide are attempting to do the same thing at the same time.
      Nationally it’s already been established that they are targeting specific stores this Friday. Of course all but perhaps one is not any place the so called 1% would shop.
      Anyway, what has me very concerned is one of the goals of the movement is to cause most police departments in the US to burn through their budgets and any emergency funding they can get so they won’t be able to respond effectively. What happens after that depends upon the city, county, and state governments. Will they ask for State Police aid, National Guard troops? Will there be a curfews imposed? I think any help from the Federal level is realistically out of the question.
      Maybe our City won’t be as bad as others, I certainly hope not.

    15. But what is working with SPD going to do to solve the problems that you want to solve?

      The council passed a resolution stating that they don’t hate you. Governor Gregoire made Kasey Keller (a Sounder) Day a thing. Do you see what I am saying?

      What does an occupy club even do? Why don’t all of the people hanging out at SCCC literally walk into lectures? Get REAL free education. People sit in on lectures all the time. Do it en masse and maybe get a bit of attention that way? Prove that you really want access to education. Camping at SCCC isn’t proving this.

      Going to Olympia to protest is all fine if you are looking to get media attention, but unless you do a Wisconsin style protest, nothing will come of it. Also, lobbying for a few days won’t do anything. You need to continuously lobby (Then again, you’d become a lobbyist and that is inherently evil in your book, right?). Just like you need to continuously promote moving away from banks (i.e. take people to branches and help them close their accounts). Just like if you might want to voice your opinions about transportation priorities, you need to engage the council, your neighbors, your legislators, and ultimately the FTA en masse.

      By engage, I mean a real discourse with people. Don’t tell them why they are wrong. Don’t recycle the same rhetoric. Do some research. Present ideas. Get proactive.

      If this happens I will most definitely donate money, resources, and time to this movement.

    16. Dude, your last line has come up on the ballot almost every time for the past 3 years or so. Unfortunately, people don’t think it’s important to vote. A large turnout is only something like 30% of the population. Most of them are conservative. Most conservatives aren’t really friendly to these sorts of resources. If you want to change this and you don’t vote, then vote. If you do, then get your friends who don’t to vote.

      It’s something. I know I know “voting is a sham. blah blah,” but give it a try AND then get proactive with local governments and build from there. Get involved with your legislators too. Their information is public. You can call them and email them.

      Just a thought.

    17. Jennifer, I am so sorry. I have been affected by miscarriage, as well, and it is heartbreaking. But check this out – nobody was “murdered”. If the “baby” was not yet born, it was not a baby. The SPD’s actions are inexcusable, but you put your fetus in a very dangerous place.

    18. It seems like Jennifer is a perfect symbol for OS – an uneducated teen who makes selfish and dangerous choices and then blames others when things turn out poorly.

    19. I can’t speak for the “rest of the world,” but the mangy, mutt-looking people that are occupying seattle (central community college) at the moment are bums. You can’t walk by that place and think differently. Maybe if they didn’t look so disheveled and you know…homeless-y I would think differently.

      Just because you say you align yourself with the same (good) cause, doesn’t mean you’re actually doing anything valuable for that cause.

    20. Your comments are just plain ugly.

      What did this poor woman even do to you to receive such scorn?

      She lost her baby …. unbelievable lack of any sympathy.

      What is the old J. Cash song , “cold, cold heart'”

    21. These are all just allegations by Jennifer Fox. She has not provided any documentation to prove that she was pregnant or that she had a miscarriage. How come no witnesses have come forward to the kick or the bike shove? Hmmmmm…. She must have a bruise on her stomach. Was an autopsy performed on the fetus yet? I am interested on how this pans out. I wonder if they did a drug screen too.I also think that she should have some personal responsibility for her actions. Everyone, and I mean everyone, knows that these protests are very heated and turn out bad. Why as a pregnant woman would she place herself on the front line where all the action goes down?

    22. @X,

      You seem to be the one with the lack of sympathy. What chance would Jennifer’s child have ever had in this world? Don’t you have a heart?

      As for your question about what she did wrong, I think that AbstractMonkeys above sums it up pretty well:
      “Sure, this poor woman’s assertions are all bullshit: 1) that she was kicked in the stomach by police, 2) that she miscarried as a result, 3) the risk to her unborn child from being at this protest was acceptable, 4) it’s OK to have unprotected sex while homeless, 5) it’s OK for a 19 year old to bring a child into the world when she has zero means of supporting it. The odds that the unborn child’s development was at risk from drug and alcohol use are also extremely high.”

      And that’s written by someone who has generally been supportive of OS on this blog…

      Jennifer shows a pattern of thinking of no one but herself in her actions and then expecting someone else to clean up the messes she creates. Perhaps if people like you didn’t coddle her and make excuses for her she might eventually learn how to be a responsible member of society.

    23. You guys seriously sound like a bunch of whiny ass bitches. Spending your time complaining about 80 people who’s movement does move. They will fade on there own, and while yes they are dirty bums they are not mentally ill homeless people, it is unlikey they will stab, rape, or whip there dick out on you, they’re just real lazy. And for the people who say it will affect holiday parking, it will not, nobody gives a shit but you guys complaining in the comments so get a grip

    24. Have you actually read interviews with Jennifer or with Dorli (the 84-year-old woman)? Have you watched any of the videos from these demonstrations? Like this one: http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2011/11/15/video-o

      The cops are spraying people en masse, *on a sidewalk.* No one should have to expect that. No victim — in Seattle, at Berkeley (have you seen the clubbings?), on a sidewalk in New York, anywhere — should get blamed for the assault they endure at the hands of cops. The only legal use of pepper-spray is to prevent potential harm to the person targeted or others. None of these people were presenting immediate harm to either the armed cops or anyone else nearby. Certainly not a homeless pregnant woman who was fighting for her own welfare as well as that of her future child, and not an 84-year-old woman who happened to see the protest when she got off her bus and walked over to it. (Jennifer, by the way, repeatedly told the cops she wanted to get out of the way and that she was pregnant, but they wouldn’t clear a path for her.) That’s what happened. No one was “placed” anywhere by “organizers,” despite what people here have tried to assert. They acted on their own damn volition. It’s a funny thing, political agency. We’re not used to having it, so it’s a shock when people decide to act on it.

      Stop blaming the victim for what even the mayor has called an overuse of force.

    25. She wasn’t even pregnant. Has a history of lying and told police back in September that she was 3 months pregnant when she was caught for criminal trespassing. Her foster mother confirms that she is a pathological liar. Additionally she refuses to show ultrasound pictures and release her medical records proving, or disproving, her claims.

    26. “StrangeT”: “T” is for “Troll”?

      In case this is someone’s actual line of, uh…thought, if you will…wake the hell up. No one TAKES anyone to any of these protests. Everyone who shows up is there of their own will.

      Only someone who believes what they hear from Fox/Limbaugh/Beck and the rest of that non-thinking ilk would think that there is any orchestration at all, to the makeup of the people who are protesting the bankers’ destruction of our way of life.

      Dimwit.

    27. Just because she refused to produce medical records when harassed by the Stranger just after (potentially) experiencing the shock of losing her unborn child doesn’t mean she was, in fact, lying. And in the KIRO interview, she says that she was one-month pregnant with twins in September at the time of the other police report. If she had twins, it’s entirely possible one might have been miscarried for other, perhaps less violent, reasons earlier in the pregnancy. Police reports get information wrong *all the time* — like when my boyfriend was partner was brutally assaulted by a drunk man he’d never met before and there were multiple witnesses, but the police report claimed it was a mutual “altercation,” completely disregarding all the testimonies to the contrary.

      And let’s not lose sight of the fact that regardless of whether or not she was pregnant (I still see reason to give her benefit of the doubt), it’s apparent to everyone who has seen footage of this, including the mayor, that cops coated everyone within range with pepper-spray — even when people had moved to the sidewalk. That’s the real issue.

    28. first don’t misinterpret the Mayor’s apology for your own benefit. He apologized to the peaceful protestors that were paper sprayed such as the older lady and this alleged pregnant one.I do agree that these people and the others on the sidewalk should not have been pepper sprayed;however, in a video, I clearly heard the police give two warnings to disperse, they waited, and then pepper sprayed after being rushed by a few people. They did get overzealous in their spraying. Once again to the protestors, if you know there is possibility of getting arrested or pepper, as is such with these protests as of late, and you have a medical condition,have some personal responsibility and don’t go. “If you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.” There are many other ways to take a stand.
      As for the girl, you are stretchin it with the twins thing. If she was such a high-risk pregnancy she should of been bed ridden and not be out at all. Once again, self resposibility. Can you even tell that you have twins at one month??? The story is not making sense and has many holes. Plus she is a known habitual liar with a bad past history. Those are serious allegations if they are true. If they aren’t, she needs serious mental help. I still want know if there is a bruise from being kicked. Have you ever heard the story about a boy that cried wolf??

    29. First of all, here is a thought and a word for the well-being and recovery of the victim of the apparent sexual assault.

      Secondly, it’s increasingly looking like Jennifer Fox’s story is straining the limits of credibility:

      http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2016829484_o

      http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2011/11/22/questio

      Thirdly,
      Even if all the criticisms leveled by commenters above–about individual protestors or about the national movement in general–are true, and by no means is that necessarily the case, the callous tone is shameful and unnecessary. Think about these people–remember, they are people–as you give thanks for all your blessings this week.

    30. “What did this poor woman even do to you to receive such scorn?”

      She lied and made everyone who supports her and OWS/OS look TOTALLY STUPID.

      That’s what she did.

      SHE WAS NEVER EVEN PREGNANT AT ALL! SHE IS A LIAR.

    31. OK, someone has to say it, so I’ll be the “bad guy”: IF Jennifer Fox was pregnant, and IF her fetus was somehow injured by abdominal trauma/pepper spray, and IF she actually had a miscarriage (all of this is very doubtful according to today’s Seattle Times), then it was a good thing for her and for society which would be responsible for supporting her and the child. She is homeless, destitute, and the “father” is in jail. What chance would the baby have for a reasonably normal/healthy life? Answer: none. (unless he/she was adopted).