RNC Protest Video Reports: Hundreds Arrested in Widespread Police Crackdown

Sept. 3-4 Updates:

Repression Comes to St. Paul (The Progressive)

Amy Goodman Grills St. Paul Police Chief About Her Arrest and Two Democracy Now! Producers (Democracy Now!)

Riot Cops Gas Docile Crowd Outside the RNC (Alternet)

At Least 284 People Arrested in the Twin Cities, Including Amy Goodman (Free Speech Radio News)

Massive Protests Greet Republican Delegates (Free Speech Radio News)

On the 2nd day of the RNC, the Poor Person’s March began with arrests, at the Ripple Effect Music Festival in front of the Capital Rage Against the Machine was threatened with arrest if they took the stage, the two events collided, combined, and ended with a peaceful demonstrators delivering a Citizen’s Arrest warrant through the fence of the barricade’s surrounding the RNC, and, after that, tear gas and concussion grenades. Oliver Dykstra and Leif Utne report. Footage from Oliver Dykstra, Leif Utne, and Corrine McDermid. Edited by Corrine McDermid. From www.TheUptake.org

A slideshow by Lindsay Beyerstein of security forces tear-gassing a peaceful Poor Peoples March during the Republican National Convention, Sept. 2, 2008. Set to music by Junior Murvin.

Several activist groups held an outdoor press conference in St. Paul this morning to decry police brutality against peaceful protesters. Last night, police filed tear gas into a peaceful crowd on 7th Street when the group did not immediately scatter upon the order to disperse — rapid egress was hampered by the fact that the the police had encircled groups of people and locked down intersections at both ends of the block. [Link]



Gena Berglund of Minnesota Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild reports from Democracy Now!:

Police in the Twin Cities arrested nearly 300 protesters as well as several journalists covering the protests Monday. I was arrested along with two producers from Democracy Now – Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar. Also arrested were Associated Press photographer Matt Rourke and two filmmakers from Pepperspray Productions–Lambert Rochfort and Joseph Lasac.

Most of the arrests took place within hours of a ten-thousand-strong peace march organized by the Coalition to March on the RNC and Stop the War. After the rally ended, several splinter groups broke off for spontaneous breakaway actions in the streets of St. Paul. Some were seen breaking windows at the First National Bank, Macys and other buildings. Others also set up makeshift barricades in the streets and tried to block delegate buses from reaching the convention. Officers in riot gear fired rubber bullets, tear gas, pepperspray and concussion grenades at the protesters and some journalists as well.


Marjorie Cohn, President of the National Lawyers Guild, reports:

Since Friday, local police and sheriffs, working with the FBI, conducted preemptive searches, seizures, and arrests.  Glenn Greenwald described the targeting of protestors by "teams of 25-30 officers in riot gear, with semi-automatic weapons drawn, entering homes of those suspected of planning protests, handcuffing and forcing them to lay on the floor, while law enforcement officers searched the homes, seizing computers, journals, and political pamphlets."  Journalists were detained at gunpoint and lawyers representing detainees were handcuffed at the scene.

"I was personally present and saw officers with riot gear and assault rifles, pump action shotguns," said Bruce Nestor, the President of the Minnesota chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, who is representing several of the protestors.  "The neighbor of one of the houses had a gun pointed in her face when she walked out on her back porch to see what was going on.  There were children in all of these houses, and children were held at gunpoint."

Blogging from the streets:"I am blogging now from what can only be called “The Occupied Twin Cities”. As the Minnesota National Guard marches through the streets of downtown St. Paul tonight in a display reminiscent of the old Soviet May Day parades, those who made it past the mass arrests of the day try to find a place to rest their weary heads and scrub the pepper spray off." Keep reading here.

Anti War Protester Who Offers Flower to Police Brutally Attacked – More overreaction from the police force at the RNC.

More resources:
The Uptake for live video reports
Twin Cities Indymedia for ongoing updates


Police Arresting Goodman

September 2 Video Updates:

Police Repression at RNC Protests

Explosions at the RNC Protest

Press Conference On Amy Goodman’s Arrest At Minneapolis RNC

Iraq Veterans Against the War

September 1:

Amy Goodman Arrested at RNC

Democracy Now! – ST. PAUL–Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman and producers Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar have all been released from police custody in St. Paul following their illegal arrest by Minneapolis Police on Monday afternoon.

All three were violently manhandled by law enforcement officers. Abdel Kouddous was slammed against a wall and the ground, leaving his arms scraped and bloodied. He sustained other injuries to his chest and back. Salazar’s violent arrest by baton-wielding officers, during which she was slammed to the ground while yelling, “I’m Press! Press!,” resulted in her nose bleeding, as well as causing facial pain. Goodman’s arm was violently yanked by police as she was arrested. Keep reading this update here

Call Mayor Chris Coleman’s office and demand the charges be dropped for Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar. You can direct your call to Chris Rider at Mayor Coleman’s office, 651-266-8535.

RNC Eve: The Police Raids Begin

The Uptake & Democracy Now! – This is video from the first of a series of raids Ramsey County Sherrifs deputies carried out on groups, people and locations related to plans to protest the Republican National Convention. This raid happened at 10pm on Friday night and Wyoming and Smith in St. Paul.

The pattern of detaining, searching and then releasing large numbers of people would be followed in the several raids that followed on Saturday.

Amy Goodman Jumps Fence To Question Cops

This video is from The Uptake –Saint Paul, MN Police Department raids a home at 591 Iglehart Avenue at gunpoint. The journalists include a contributing photojournalist with "Democracy Now", whose host Amy Goodman appears in this clip jumping a fence to question police officers.

This is part of a series of police actions on the eve of the Republican National Convention in St. Paul.

After several hours, all those detained were released. No arrests. No property was seized as result of the search warrant. The clip ends with an interview with homeowner Mike Whalen. At the start of the clip, a neighbor shouts to the media and onlookers that we could all come into her backyard to see the detained people held in the adjacent backyard.

Video from Aug. 31: RNC Eve: Police Seize Sustainable Living Bus

Also see these reports from Toward Freedom:

Miami Model Applied to Republican National Convention in Minnesota

RNC Raids: Police Intimidate Community Organizers and Activists