Update: According to @itsWanda et al Twitterers, Occupy Oakland protesters signed a nonviolence pledge before entering City Hall. Signing the pledge was not mandatory for admittance.
The Oakland Police Department and City Officials remain void of human decency as they attempt to quash dissent. Last night around 11:30 p.m. approximately 60 Oakland Police Officers, some in riot gear, came to execute a ruling from City Administrator Deanna J. Santana who felt the presence of an information table and Interfaith tent posed too great a risk for the city of Oakland.
The number of those arrested ranges between 8 and 12, again, lack of transparency and snatch tactics of the OPD play a role. Many arrested were members of the Occupy Oakland media team. Among those arrested was Adam Katz, also known as @geekeasy on Twitter. Officers instructed him to “get behind the line,” but would not answer any questions as Adam is shown backing away. Apparently, officers viewed Adam’s actions as unlawful and he was arrested. Fortunately, he filmed his arrest giving a clear view of OPD on a power high.
In support of the Occupy Oakland vigil and those wrongfully arrested, a group of 50 protesters marched to the jail around midnight. They were met by more police and threats of arrest. Not deterred, people remained on the scene demanding their right to protest.
Thursday afternoon at 2 p.m. protesters returned to reinstate the Interfaith tent and information table. When OPD again arrived on the scene, protesters decided to take their issue to City Hall, literally just feet away from the vigil.
Blocking the attempt to speak to City Officials directly, police officers locked the door. When the door was unlocked, police officers said no one would be allowed inside. This led to chants of “let them in” and “shame!” After a stand off, representation from the interfaith tent gained admittance and issued their demands including releasing and dropping charges on all that were arrested Wednesday night.
All who can go and support the vigil and its effort are encouraged to go to Oscar Grant Plaza (Frank Ogawa Plaza). Alternatively, a phone call shows them you care: Mayor Jean Quan 510.238.3141, Deanna Santana 510.238.3301. The next meeting of the Oakland City Council is January 17 and public comments are allowed before and during the meeting.