You may have heard that pepper spray was used on the first official night of the DNC, or that some protesters got arrested. The UpTake’s Eli Linch went on a mission today to find out what happened and get the protester’s side of the story. Are the charges levied on those arrested accurate? When did the tear gas come into the picture? Check out this side of the story.
Greg Spagnuolo – spokesperson and co-founder of the Recreate 68 Allaince says the police were getting out of hand and acting in a criminal nature
Protesters say they were blockaded. Police had been harassing people throughout the day in the park even though the people had a permit to be there.. The police drove them out of the park and then blocked them in an area where they pepper sprayed people and shoved people with their batons
Police report said the people who were arrested were throwing rocks at the police, obstruction and disobeying lawful orders. Several people told us they didn’t see anybody throw rocks at the police. There were no orders given by police. The minute protesters went into the streets they were hit with pepper spray and pepper bullets.
Another organizer told us “We have a permit for this park. So to me it’s the cops who disobeyed a lawful order to leave us the hell alone with our permit.
“They make these things up when they attack people so they can try and make charges stick, so they don’t wind up looking like the aggressor, which is what they were.”
Spagnulo says “It’s a shame that this had to happen. Everyone was acting non-violently. The police were itching for a fight since about 6 o’clock on. They were pushing people in the park shoving people around acting like a bunch of bullies and it didn’t need to happen this way. I don’t know who made the tactical call from the police department, but it was a piss-poor call because now everybody is all tense and motivated for more confrontation and that’s something we didn’t want and its something that the police are bringing down upon themselves and I think it’s a shame.”