16th General Assembly Discusses Police Protocol: NYC
by Joseph Wade
The NYPD do not want an escalation, and they will not move toward arrests, suddenly, without reason, said Laura Prezio, a working physical therapist from the Philadelphia area. She was a voice of reason during the 16th general assembly which focused on plans for a possible police raid.
The movement’s fear stem from the arresting of over 80 people in a march on Wall Street that took place yesterday. People were gassed, maced, and some were injured. Many of these arrests were shown on YouTube. One of the most famous arrests showed police corralling protestors with orange, plastic fencing which ended in the macing and arrest of several people.
One person in the assembly addressed the group, saying that the police have not raided the park and said rumors of possible police raids were unfounded and actually fear mongering. The majority of the assembly agreed, putting their hands in the air, a symbol of agreement.
Prezio said she spoke with detectives, Lieutenants, and patrolmen of the NYPD. She said that while they must take orders, they don’t want to cause disorder and panic with sudden, unannounced arrests as long as the protestors remain peaceful.
Prezario said that one detective told her that while the NYPD must follow orders, they would prefer to give a one-hour warning to the protesters if there would be an order for the movement to vacate the park at Broadway and Liberty in Manhattan.
“In all due respect,” is a phrase she used to describe how the movement needs to act toward authority. Prezio said that this attitude is key to the movement.
Toward the end of the assembly, one protestor said no one was arrested today because no one marched.
As I was I finishing this article, NYPD walked into the park and told an organizer of problems they were having so they could be corrected—the time, making no arrests. The situation is escalating right now. The argument is over a projection that the NYPD is saying is illegal. One member is arguing that the projection must be turned off. He is claiming that the NYPD is violating first amendment rights. People are crowding around us right now. On voice of reason just said that they are taking down the projector and the police are leaving right now. The people are discussing their response to the NYPD.