Oakland leaders say Occupy ‘out of hand’

Hundreds arrested in Occupy clashes; City Hall vandalized

- By Judy Keen

After 400 arrests over weekend, Mayor Jean Quan, above, urges protesters to stop using city as “playground,”

Tensions remained high Sunday in Oakland after weekend clashes between police and Occupy Oakland protesters brought more than 400 arrests.

The Oakland turmoil was part of a weekend of developmen­ts in the Occupy movement across the nation.

Occupy protesters objecting to economic inequality gathered outside Oakland City Hall on Saturday and marched through the streets. Some entered City Hall, a YMCA building and a vacant convention center, police said. The action in City Hall left glass cases smashed, graffiti spray-painted on walls and an American flag burned.

Democratic Mayor Jean Quan inspected damage Sunday, and police said officers had been hit with bottles, metal pipes, rocks and burning flares. Three officers and a protester were injured.

At a news conference, Quan urged the Occupy movement to “stop using Oakland as its playground.” In October, police dismantled an Occupy camp in Frank H. Ogawa Plaza.

Occupy Oakland said in a statement that most arrests were improper because police “gave no option of leaving or instructio­n on how to depart.”

Oakland Councilman Ignacio De La Fuente said police acted appropriat­ely and some Occupy protesters engage in “domestic terrorism.”

“We have allowed things to really get out of hand,” he said, “and the escalation is becoming . . . a very dangerous problem for us.”

Occupy Oakland member Omar Yassin, 43, said he was threatened with arrest Saturday “for yelling at” police, but he still protested Sunday. Police and public officials, he said, “are scared of this mass movement.”

Shake Anderson, 35, another member, said police “instigated” the violence. “We’re getting better at dealing with it: staying calm, not running and panicking,” he said. Occupy activity elsewhere: -Members of Occupy DC gathered outside a Washington hotel where President Obama and others gathered for an annual dinner sponsored by the elite Alfalfa Club. Some attendees were showered with glitter as they arrived Saturday night. The National Park Service said it will begin enforcing rules today barring overnight camping in two Washington parks used by Occupy protesters.

-Occupy protesters joined union members Saturday in Indianapol­is to oppose recently passed legislatio­n that would ban contracts requiring workers to pay mandatory union fees for representa­tion. They marched through Super Bowl Village, a temporary downtown entertainm­ent zone. Indianapol­is hosts Sunday’s NFL championsh­ip.

Occupy Indiana marched Sunday in Indianapol­is to support Occupy Oakland.

The Occupy movement began as Occupy Wall Street in New York in September and spread to dozens of cities. The protests have faded in recent weeks amid winter weather and cities’ efforts to eliminate encampment­s of demonstrat­ors.

 ?? By Noah Berger, AP ??
By Noah Berger, AP
 ?? By Kimihiro Hoshino, Afp/getty Images ?? Protesters from Occupy Oakland knock over fences set up by police to surround and detain them on a vacant lot in Oakland.
By Kimihiro Hoshino, Afp/getty Images Protesters from Occupy Oakland knock over fences set up by police to surround and detain them on a vacant lot in Oakland.

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