VIDEO: New York Police evict Occupy Wall Street protesters from Zucotti Park
After nearly two months, the New York Police swept into Zucotti Park Tuesday night, ordering Occupy Wall Street protesters to leave the park with their belongings, or be arrested. About 150 protesters were taken into police custody.
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Early Tuesday morning, New York's Police Department cleared Zucotti Park, evicting the Occupy Wall Street protesters from their rallying location.
The decision was controversial — a judge granted a temporary restraining order against the police department — but New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the decision was necessary to clean the park.
“New York City is the city where you can come and express yourself,” the mayor said in the New York Times. “What was happening in Zuccotti Park was not that.” He said the protesters had taken over the park, “making it unavailable to anyone else."
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Hundreds of police officers were involved in the raid on the nearly two-month old camp. They told protesters that the park would be cleared out and restored, before protesters would be allowed to return. Demonstrators who didn't leave were arrested — more than 100 of them.
Zucotti Park is privately owned, The New York Times said, and on Monday, the owner, Brookfield Properties, asked the city to help enforce its no sleeping and camping rules. Bloomberg insisted, however, the the final decision to act was his.
A number of demonstrators reconvened at Foley Square to determine what their next course of action would be. While NYPD had begun to let protesters return to the park, that has been halted while lawyers for the city prepare for a hearing this morning relating to the restraining order issued over night.
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