Occupy Dallas Protestors Arrested for Blocking Entrance to Chase Bank Branch Downtown
The two Occupy Dallas protestors who stayed behind following the arrests of their comrades
Photo by Anna Merlan
So happened that Anna was hanging out at Chase Tower earlier today awaiting Occupy Dallasites who said they were going to parade, two by two, into the bank to close their accounts and transfer their dough into a credit union. Which is why Anna was joined by two very bored Highway Patrol officers and an elderly security guard on a Rascal. Problem is, the OD'ers never made it that far: About a dozen were arrested moments ago at Main and Akard, outside a Chase branch, where they locked arms and blocked the entrance. At least, that's the number given to Anna by two of the Occupiers who stayed behind.
WFAA says the number's closer to 20, but Dallas PD is being a little more tight-lipped at the moment: Public information officer Sherri Jeffrey just told Anna people were arrested, but didn't want to say how many. "We don't want to speculate and be wrong," added Lt. J.S. Walton. Seven police cars are still on the scene, along with two protestors waving signs.
Occupy Dallas says the protestors were arrested for blocking the entrance to the bank, which they dispute, insisting customers could still get into the bank. Per Occupy Dallas's Facebook page: "The rest of the protesters are following to Lou Sterritt/Crowley Court to protest arrests as violation of 1st Amendment rights."
Updates forthcoming, as DPD tries to decide whether to issue a press release or hold a press conference.
Update at 3:37 p.m.: After the jump, video taken during the arrest.
Update at 4:35 p.m.: This just in from Dallas City Hall:
This afternoon, a group of Occupy Dallas demonstrators marched from City Hall to a Chase Bank located at Main and Akard. Once there, the demonstrators blocked the entrance ways to the bank, thus not allowing patrons to utilize the bank. Representatives with Chase Bank asked the demonstrators to leave the property in the presence of Dallas Police Officers. The demonstrators were told they would not be arrested if they complied with the criminal trespass warning and vacated the property; however, numerous demonstrators refused to leave. As a result, 23 individuals were subsequently arrested for Criminal Trespass. One police officer received minor injuries to his leg during the incident.
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