Reignited Occupy Oakland Protests Continue Throughout Country Behind Rising Anger With Economy
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10 Occupy Oakland Protesters Arraigned
The Bay Citizen – Ten Occupy Oakland protesters were arraigned Monday on misdemeanor charges of obstructing a sidewalk during a demonstration at Frank Ogawa Plaza on Jan. 4. After a brief hearing in Alameda County Superior Court, the protesters’ attorney, Frank Viola of the National Lawyers Guild, said the protesters were initially arrested for resisting arrest.
He said the fact that they are only being charged with obstructing a sidewalk indicates to him that there’s not much of a case against them and that the arrests are “a thin attempt to violate their civil rights.”
Viola said the demonstrators were only “raising their voices for the 99 percent” and speaking out against inequality. “This is a political struggle, and we’ll fight in the streets and fight in the courts if necessary,” Viola said. He said attorneys for the protesters will file a motion to dismiss the charges, and that the motion will be debated at a hearing on Feb. 22.
Alameda County District Attorney spokeswoman Teresa Drenick denied an allegation by Occupy Oakland protesters that prosecutors filed charges in the case because they were under pressure to do so. “We review every case on the merits and based on police reports,” she said.
About two dozen Occupy Oakland protesters gathered at the Wiley Manuel Courthouse for the hearing Monday morning, drinking coffee and eating bagels and bacon next to a sign outside the courthouse that read “Bacon Not Pigs.”
Protesters plan to gather again at Frank Ogawa Plaza at noon for a rally and a march back to the Wiley Manuel Courthouse at 1 p.m.
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