The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

By Jeremy Roebuck, The Philadelphia Inquirer

PHILADELPHIA — A federal judge has dismissed claims that city police used excessive force and performed unreasonable searches when dismantling an Occupy Philadelphia encampment on Dilworth Plaza in 2011.

But in the case brought by 26 of the demonstrators, U.S. District Judge Berle Schiller ruled this week that their attempts to secure damages for unlawful arrest, retaliation and other alleged civil rights violations could proceed to trial.

In a November lawsuit, the protesters contended that police, under the direction of Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey, violated their rights to free speech and assembly by arresting them without probable cause.

The Nov. 30, 2011, clash came as city officials urged the Occupy encampment to move after seven weeks of protests outside City Hall. At the time, Mayor Michael Nutter said the site needed to be cleared for an already scheduled $50 million renovation to the plaza.

The protesters contended they complied with police orders, and began marching north on Broad Street — only to be arrested anyway. They were charged with conspiracy, failure to disperse and blocking a roadway. All were later acquitted.

In his opinion Tuesday, Schiller said that the protesters had not provided detailed information in court filings to suggest officers used excessive force against them. The suit only describes threats of detainment and officers’ efforts to restrict the protesters’ movements, actions Schiller described as “routine in the course of an arrest.”

Likewise, protesters did not detail specific searches nor explain how they were improper, the judge said.

The civil suit is one of several filed in response to clashes between Occupy protesters and police across the country. The Occupy Wall Street movement began in September 2011 with demonstrations in New York City’s Zucotti Park over rising income inequality.

AFP Photo/Scott Olson

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Rep.Marjorie Taylor Greene

Outspoken MAGA firebrand and Christian nationalist Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) — who unleashed a litany of falsehoods, including the Big Lie, at a GOP gala — is headed for splitsville after her husband of 27 years filed for divorce on Wednesday, citing an “irretrievably broken” marriage.

Keep reading... Show less

Ginni Thomas

Youtube Screenshot

Appearing behind closed doors in person for four hours with investigators from the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack, far right-wing activist and lobbyist Ginni Thomas reiterated her false claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen, calling it a “heist.” Thomas also insisted she has never discussed her work to overturn the election results with her husband, the person she publicly refers to as her “best friend,” Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who has resisted calls to recuse himself from any cases surrounding the January 6 insurrection.

Keep reading... Show less
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}