Business, Finance & Economics

Occupy Philly passes its deadline to leave


Occupy Philly demonstrators pack up as they approach Sunday's 5 pm deadline.


Jeff Fusco

Occupy Philadelphia has reached its deadline to leave its current location, with many of its protesters leaving and only some remaining, the Associated Press reported.

Occupy Philly has occupied Dilworth Plaza for almost two months without any arrests or scuffles with the cops, unlike most Occupy locations across the country. As the deadline approached today about 50 protesters locked arms and sat at the entrance of the plaza and there seemed to be hope Sunday night that they would continue to occupy without any violence, the AP reported.

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"Right now, we have a peaceful demonstration," said Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Joe Sullivan, nearly 45 minutes after the 5 p.m. deadline had come and passed, the AP reported.

On Saturday night Occupy Philly members met to propose ways to discuss different reactions to arrests made if they didn’t obey the deadline imposed by Mayor Michael Nutter.

"There will be a rally outside the Roundhouse [the police administration building] if there are mass arrests," said Stephen Metzger of Occupy Philly, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Although a police spokesperson told the Philadelphia Inquirer they would take action and make arrests if necessary, none have been reported as of yet. Over the course of Occupy Philly, about four dozen arrests have been made, without any violent confrontations with the police, the AP reported.

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The mayor set the deadline to leave on Friday, saying that although he supported the movement’s ideals he had to make room for a long-planned project, which protesters were informed about on Oct. 6 when they set up camp, the AP reported. Union workers involved in the project issued a request to the Occupiers to leave also, so they could go ahead with their work, which employs hundreds of people.

The plaza in Philadelphia was home to about 350 tents at the height of the movement. The city issued a permit to Occupiers, called Reasonable Solutions, to move the demonstration across the street on Monday, the AP reported. The move would limit the demonstration to 9 am to 7 pm daily and would not allow over night camping.

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