The City of Oakland is cleaning up today after yesterday's peaceful demonstrations by Occupy Oakland turned increasingly violent as the day and night wore on. Earlier in the day, thousands of people heeded Occupy Oakland's call for a general strike. The city did not shut down, but hundreds of teachers, nurses, city workers, and even school children took the day off to join in the day of protests. Later, protesters shut down the Port of Oakland, took over a vacant building, set things ablaze, and shattered glass windows at banks and businesses. Police again used tear gas against protesters; at least 80 people were arrested, police say.
6:25 p.m. Mayor Jean Quan issued a statement (PDF) on the city's website, noting Oakland is in "post-action clean-up mode," and thanked businesses in the area for supporting local jobs.
We are deeply saddened by yesterday’s incidents of vandalism that affected some downtown businesses, caused by isolated individuals intent on violence and destruction while hiding amongst an estimated 7,000 peaceful demonstrators. Late last night, the Oakland Police were able to isolate and arrest 101 violent protesters.
We want to thank our local businesses for sticking by Oakland while toughing it out during the economic downturn and global recession of the past few years. We personally want to apologize to the businesses that were affected by yesterday’s events. We are stepping up our efforts to address the longer term issue of Occupy Oakland and hope for your support.
Quan also thanks the clean up crew, which includes, "Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Oakland and Lake Merritt Community Benefit Districts, Chinatown Chamber, and community members, including the Occupy Oakland peaceful protesters."
5:13 p.m. Organizers from the Occupy Oakland demonstration have issued a press release today, calling for "immediate arrest" of the driver who hit two Occupy protesters last night, as well as denouncing the anarchists that vandalized businesses yesterday. Their statement reads in part:
The behavior that they have engaged in including breaking windows, vandalizing buildings, turning over dumpsters, etc… is not endorsed or condoned by Occupy Oakland. Occupy Oakland protesters have stopped the anarchist’s destructive and malicious behavior at every turn and will continue to do so.
Here is a video from ABC affiliate KGO-TV, which includes cell phone footage of the scuffle between the pedestrian and driver.
KQED's news reporter Andrew Stelzer shot this video yesterday of an Occupy protester tackling an all black-clad vandal who was attempting to break a window at Whole Foods.
3:13 p.m. From Poynter: Cartoonist Susie Cagle remains jailed after cartooning at Occupy Oakland. Susie Cagle's site here.
3:12 p.m. Video of today's press briefing by Mayor Jean Quan, Interim Police Chief Howard Jordan, and City Administrator Deanna Santana.
3:00 p.m. Tweeted by KTVU:
2:25 p.m. Bay Citizen editor Steve Fainaru describes getting hit with a tear-gas canister last night as police and protesters faced off.
I was inching forward when there was a bright flash and another loud explosion. A fraction of a second later, I felt an object hit me in the stomach on my right side, not very hard, almost a tap, followed by a pop and another flash. Then searing heat on my left hand, then numbness.
I looked down and my hand was black, my four fingers covered in toxic chemicals. I couldn’t feel my hand much but could clench it and unclench it and assumed I was okay. My blue flannel shirt also was black, stained where the canister had struck me and discharged. I was soaked in tear gas, but for some reason it was having less of an effect than the burning on my hand.
Another strange but not entirely unexpected thought popped into my head: 6 inches lower and it would have hit me in the crotch. Full story
2:23 p.m. Salon columnist Glenn Greenwald was on KQED Radio's Forum today, discussing inequality in America and the Occupy Wall Street movement. Listen here.
1:50 p.m. Police are displaying for journalists objects they say were thrown at them by protesters who had taken over an abandoned building last night. Police say fires were set around the building to prevent them from approaching before they cleared it out.
The City of Oakland is cleaning up the graffiti and debris covering downtown this morning after yesterday's peaceful demonstrations by Occupy Oakland turned increasingly violent as the day and night wore on. Earlier in the day, thousands of people heeded Occupy Oakland's call for a general strike. The city did not shut down, but hundreds of teachers, nurses, city workers, and even school children took the day off to join in the day of protests. Later, protesters shut down the Port of Oakland, took over a vacant building, set things ablaze, and shattered glass windows at banks and businesses. Overnight, police again used tear gas against protesters; at least 80 people were arrested, police say.
Rolling updates below, followed by Twitter feeds from journalists and the general public.
1:40 p.m. The city's press briefing is now over. KQED's Ian Hill listened in and tweeted reports here.
1 p.m. City of Oakland press conference scheduled for 1 p.m. Watch it live at KGO.
12 p.m. Update from the city:
- No arrests during the day (between 7 am and midnight)
- Preliminary arrests: 80+ (after midnight)
- Injured civilians: 5
- Injured Officers: 3
- Mutual Aid support: 15 agencies
- Tear gas and bean bags were administered to disperse individuals who failed to leave.
- During the afternoon, a handful of businesses were vandalized, including major damage to Chase Bank, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Whole Foods
- During the evening, a large number of local businesses were vandalized. Multiple buildings were tagged and windows were broken. The City is requesting that property owners who suffered major vandalism file police reports.
- Streets are open.
- Transit is running as scheduled
- Public Works
- Graffiti abatement on buildings at 150 and 250 Frank Ogawa Plaza, and BART entrance
- Replacing 30 square feet of paving stones (about 70) that were removed from Plaza near the Frank Ogawa statue and near the fountain.
- Replacing windows in all three City Buildings around the Plaza: Tully’s on the ground floor of 150 Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland Police Department and Cypress Security offices in 250 Frank Ogawa Plaza, ground floor of City Hall.
Garbage clean-up, debris removal, and pressure washing.
- The City of Oakland is open for business today; all City offices are open during regular business hours.
Port of Oakland Operations
- The Port of Oakland is now fully operational.
- Workers in the maritime area of the Port continue to return to their jobs, and seaport operations are returning to normal.
- Operations at the Oakland International Airport and real estate areas continue as normal from yesterday.
- All entrances to the Port are open. There are truck traffic lines at some gates and terminal operations are processing backlogs from yesterday’s disruptions.
- The most current field reports confirm that in the Port area there were no injuries, no property damage, and no major security problems from last night’s demonstrations. There was a limited incursion into a private rail facility, and trespassers were escorted off peacefully.
- There are no public street closure at this time.
11:50 a.m. The City of Oakland will hold a public briefing at 1 p.m. KGO TV will be streaming live.
11:35 a.m. From the Port of Oakland:
The Port of Oakland is now fully operational. Workers in the maritime area of the Port continue to return to their jobs and seaport operations are returning to normal. Operations at the Oakland International Airport and real estate areas continue as normal from yesterday.
All entrances to the Port are open. There are truck traffic lines at some gates, and terminal operations are processing backlogs from yesterday's disruptions.
The Port of Oakland commends all of the diverse stakeholders involved - our employees, our marine terminal tenants, organized labor, the truckers and other businesses working in the maritime area, the City and our law enforcement partners, as well as the marchers - for keeping the peace in the Port area last night, and for allowing us all to get back to work together today.
The Port of Oakland, its tenants, business partners and labor unions together generate over 73,000 jobs in the region and are connected to over 800,000 jobs across the country.
The Port will continue to provide operational updates throughout the day.
10:00 a.m. Salon's Glenn Greenwald discussed Occupy Wall Street and income inequality with Michael Krasny on Forum. The show will be archived here later in the day.
9:30 a.m. Our reporter Andrew Stelzer captured this video of black-clad protesters graffiting Whole Foods at 27th Street and Harrison Street in Oakland. Another protester then tackles someone who broke the store's window.
8:20 a.m. KQED Senior News Editor Julia McEvoy surveyed the damage from yesterday's peaceful Occupy Oakland march downtown that turned chaotic in the wee hours of the morning, as police clashed with vandals:
"I talked with a couple of streets and sanitation guys who said they got a call from the city to show up at one this morning and begin removing overturned planters, garbage cans that had been strewn all over, and they're thinking that the grafitti damage control is going to be enormous for the city, both for removing graffiti off windows and all the buildings. These two street and sanitation guys were really disappointed that it ended up like this. They're in great admiration of the peaceful protest, but they said they have their work cut out for them the rest of the day."
8:20 a.m. At 5:30 p.m. tonight, the Oakland City Council will take up the following agenda item:
Subject: Occupy Wall Street Camp In Oakland From: Councilmember Nadel Recommendation: Conduct a Public Hearing, Discussion Regarding Activities Of “Occupy Oakland” At Frank H. Ogawa Plaza And Other Areas Of The City, Including Without Limitation, Demonstrations, Assembly, Overnight Stays, Encampment And City Protocols, And Policies And Possible Action Including The Following Proposed Resolution: 1) Resolution Supporting The Occupy Wall Street Protest Movement, Declaring That City Continues To Unequivocally Embrace The First Amendment To The United States Constitution And The City's Duty To Uphold The People's Right To Peaceful Assembly And Urging Mayor Jean Quan To Collaborate With Occupy Oakland To Develop Measures And Procedures To Ensure Safety Of The Protestors, Their Supporters, City Employees And The Greater Public good.
The agenda item includes city memos about communication with Occupy Oakland protesters and flyers distributed in the encampment.
8:09 a.m. From the Oakland Tribune:
After a night of confrontations with police and dozens of arrests in downtown Oakland, Occupy protesters were back at the Port of Oakland this morning, attempting to block trucks from entering.
The scene is tense at the port entrance at Adeline and 3rd streets, where truckers have faced down with about a dozen protesters, who have erected fence barriers and dragged over dumpsters to keep trucks out.
One driver ran through the blockade and said he would run down the protesters. In response, a female protester yelled "You are trying to hurt us over your job? For money? Really?"
A steady line of trucks have driven up, some honking in support of the protesters, and then driven off when they haven't been able to get in.
And here's a general Twitter feed: