WASHINGTON (WJZ) — Occupy D.C. members clash with police. Dozens of protesters were arrested after refusing orders to leave.
Andrea Fujii reports the flare-up created new tensions with police.
In all, 31 Occupy D.C. protesters were arrested Sunday morning after they refused to leave a structure that sprang up overnight without a permit in McPherson Square.
“Let the world know that America arrests people who put up structures, not the ones who are kicking families out of those structures,” said a protester.
Park and D.C. Police closed off the area and surrounded the building that an inspector deemed unsafe.
“We are a peaceful, non-violent movement and we don’t intend to put up any…” said a protester. “We’re just going to sit and they’re going to do what they want to do.”
Earlier Sunday morning, police had to remove Occupiers who refused to leave, using a cherry picker to get them down.
Not all in McPherson Square are supportive of the protesters—especially the homeless.
“They just want to be on TV. They ain’t homeless. They got a place to stay. They don’t represent us. Please don’t put us out of the park because of them,” said one.
Up until this incident, Occupy D.C. protesters and police had maintained a peaceful coexistence.