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Occupy Capitol Hill | SPD crackdown doesn’t include Occupy Seattle camp

This image of an 84-year-old protester pepper sprayed by SPD during Tuesday night’s fracas has made headlines around the world. More on the picture and last night’s protest from the Seattle PI (Image: Josh Trujillo/

As the city’s police responded with force and pepper spray to a crowd of Occupy Seattle protesters in downtown Seattle Tuesday night, the group’s camp at Broadway and Pine went untouched.

Unlike sweeps reported in other cities including at the original Occupy Wall Street camp, Seattle police — last night, at least — did not target the space Occupiers are calling home.

From the @occupyseattle Twitter feed:

SPD reported that six demonstrators were arrested in the protest at 5th at Pine and in Westlake Park.

Here’s video from @alexjon of the protest’s march back up to Capitol Hill after the downtown clash:

On Tuesday, CHS reported that Seattle Central officials abruptly canceled a weekly meeting with camp organizers amid growing tensions between the college and the Occupy Seattle camp. According to an email forwarded to CHS, a school rep told organizers that the cancelation was due to a schedule conflict.

According to the Occupy Seattle site, no march is planned for Wednesday though protesters are being urged to rally against the wave of raids on marijuana dispensaries in the area. 

On Thursday, 1,000 people are expected in a march and labor rally at the Montlake bridge.

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27 thoughts on “Occupy Capitol Hill | SPD crackdown doesn’t include Occupy Seattle camp

  1. I thought the rally at Montlake was for Working Washington, and has been organized for awhile. When the fellow at Occupy Seattle handed me the flier for the OWS rally, I asked him about the Working Washington rally and he had no idea what I was talking about.

    Working Washington’s Montlake Protest –

    Occupy Seattle’s Protest –

    Were they meant to be the same? They have different gathering times and locations.

  2. I get emails and it sounds like Moveon, local labor unions and the like are at least now choosing to associate this action with the Occupy Movement. I have no idea whether or not it was originally planned as such. Occupy groups nationwide are holding November 17th actions to stand in solidarity with OWS and the recent raids in NYC and PDX. I was at the Occupy camp last night and after the march it was announced that Occupy Seattle would meet at 4pm Thursday at SCCC and then march to Montlake Bridge to join everyone else. I know there has been some critique regarding the ‘co-opting’ of the Occupy movement by the liberal establishment, but because Move On is involved my own dear mother is planning to attend and I cannot deny that the legitimazation of such actions will be beneficial to occupy, in my opinion.

  3. Sadly, Dorli chose to join up with this group to be disruptive yesterday. OS needs to accept that this is a consequence of the actions they decided to take.

    SPD took action to maintain order, and as a citizen, I respect that they took necessary actions to protect the rest of us who decided not to act out with OS.

    OS still gets to camp out down the street. They live to disrupt our lives another day.

  4. Hey – if YOU get lucky, the will make a mistake, bash your door in, terrorize your family – make a giant mess of you home – take any stash of anything and cash and your computer …

    All a mistake.

    You are a silly goose. Rubber bullets can blind you. Chemical agents can trigger horrible reactions. People have died by use of the taser.

    And you have the word fascist upside down, read some history. But
    maybe the Krupp family is in a tent on the corner, OR, Hallibuton kin??

  5. Thank you for that info, Glasses.

    I’m not so sure that the liberal establishment is co-opting Occupy with this protest, which has been planned on the Working WA side for at least a month. Other stuff? Totally.

    Legitimacy is a key part to any social movement. If MoveOn is helping Occupy with that, then good. If Occupy is not perceived as legitimate for whatever reason, it’ll fail.


    Traffic impeded for a half hour for a small demonstration, mid town, we can never allow that in OUR city again. NO, never again, the issue does not matter nor do exercise by citizens of Freedom of Speech or Freedom of Assembly.

    Shut it all down, you bet, cause some one likes a police state. Duh.

    NADA. From one who values freedom and liberty, and a vet, and a business owner.


  7. Freedom of Speech and Assembly does not entitle another citizen to disrupt the lives of other citizens.

    OS is becoming more and more a simple nuisance that either needs to find another way to get their points across or declare clearly that, “if you’re not with us, you’re against us.” Are the average citizens that want to go about their lives the enemy too?

  8. Why didn’t they march down I5? I guess that would have bee TOO disruptive, so instead you block a major intersection during rush hour. Last I checked crossing against a signal and jaywalking are illegal. If you refuse to move when ordered to follow THE LAW then action should be taken. Is there a problem with protesting on the sidewalk where it is legal? What about Westlake Park? Or just about anywhere else where people have a legal right to congregate. But you refuse to follow the law, then resist arrest – and OMG you’re pregnant or elderly! Gasp!!! I guess you’re immune from the same laws the rest of us follow. Not being allowed to march down I5 or hang out in an intersection is not a limitation on free speech. Get over it.

  9. @OrderfromChaos: The police are not protecting you – they are protecting the establishment, which, unless you are part of the 1%, are probably not part of. Several people in this string seem to think that just because something is the “Law,” that it is in spirit, fair. That is not the case. Just because black people were legally oppressed by racist laws in this country did that mean they shouldn’t have done anything?
    Disrupting your life is the point. That is the way they get attention and hopefully force confrontation with politicians and lawmakers . You, and anyone else who surely was horribly inconvenienced by the protest yesterday, consider the people who suffer real inconvenience at the hands of our current and past administrations.

  10. MM wrote, “Last I checked crossing against a signal and jaywalking are illegal.”

    Have you heard any indication that any of the dozens of police officers on the scene yesterday enforced that law? I’ll be surprised if we see any prosecutions for alleged commissions of those violations.

    “If you refuse to move when ordered to follow THE LAW then action should be taken.”

    What action do you think should be taken in that situation? Arrest, submit a report of observations, and put the suspect in front of a judge? Deploy chemical weapons? Electrical shock? Beating?

  11. Yes, yes way, the pepper spraying certainly had an effect: to propel Occupy Seattle from their relative anonymity brightening up the corner of Broadway and Pine to international news coverage of their march — and of the Seattle Police’s unprovoked violence against them.

    When cops use those tactics, it’s pure gold for Occupy and a PR disaster for the authorities. Keep up the “good work,” SPD.

  12. In watching the video, it is quite obvious that the SPD were reasonable and restrained in their action to move the protestors out of the intersection, and this was preceded by several verbal warnings to obey the law. They only used pepper spray/arrests when some were resisting their orders to get on the sidewalk.

    This kind of action is not a restriction of free speech. The protestors could choose to continue their demonstration in a legal manner (in Westlake Park or on the sidewalk)….but of course that would not be enough drama for them.

    There might be some unreasonable laws that are OK to ignore (although I can’t think of any at the moment), but blocking a busy downtown intersection at rush hour is not one of them.

  13. Reasonable and restrained police work doesn’t normally thrust Seattle into the international spotlight, like we saw following the SPD pepper spraying of Dorli Rainey and others on Tuesday. Or produce iconic images of police brutality (see P-I photo above).

    Nor does reasonable and restrained police work typically generate apologies from the mayor. “To those engaged in peaceful protest, I am sorry that you were pepper sprayed,” McGinn said in a statement.

    Clearly, the adjectives “reasonable and restrained” do not apply to SPD actions on Tuesday.