The NYPD moved in and forced Occupy Wall Street protestors from the park they’ve been spreading disease in the past two months, vowing that they will not be allowed to rebuild their Obamaville shantytown.
The protesters, about 200 of whom have been staying in the park overnight, initially resisted with chants of “Whose park? Our park!” as officers began moving in and tearing down tents. The protesters rallied around an area known as the kitchen, near the middle of the park and began building barricades with tables and pieces of scrap wood.
Over the next two hours, dozens of protesters left the park, while a core group of about 100 dug in around the food area. Many locked arms and defied police orders to leave. By 3 a.m., dozens of helmet-clad officers, watched over by Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, closed in on the remaining protesters. They pulled them out one protester at a time and handcuffed them. Most were walked out without incident.
The Police Department’s chief spokesman, Paul J. Browne, told The Associated Press that 70 people had been arrested in the park, including some who had chained themselves together.
The protestors were evicted because of health and fire concerns posed by the encampment, which Ace has cleverly named the Human Pathogen Roadshow.
It looks like the majority of the OWS protestors left without causing too much trouble, and other than a few minor scuffles, there does not appear to have been much in the way of violence in injuries.
OWS had plotted to leave their camp Thursday in an actual attempt to shut down Wall Street and the subways. It is too early to tell if their eviction from Zuccotti will put a damper on those plans, which seemed geared towards further alienating New Yorkers that protested against the group yesterday before police moved in to dismantle the camp.