Sunday, December 4, 2011

Police arrest 29 Occupy Tampa protesters after asking them to vacate park

By Marissa Lang, Times Staff Writer
In Print: Saturday, December 3, 2011
TAMPA — One by one, they were handcuffed, pulled from the grass and loaded into a police van. All 29 of them.
In the biggest night of arrests since the Occupy Tampa movement began three months ago, police charged demonstrators with trespassing in a public park after hours and resisting arrest without violence late Thursday. Both charges are misdemeanors.
Officers also used a city ordinance to issue trespass warnings to those who were arrested. The warning is effective in all city parks. Violators could face penalties that include a $500 fine, up to 60 days in jail and as much as six months' probation.
The demonstrators were taken into custody during a peaceful protest in which the group refused to leave Riverfront Park, police said.
Susie Shannon, 59, said the officer who arrested her was very respectful.
"I think that is a viable option for all officers," she said.
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