Police Arrest Three Occupy Protesters At Central District Home

By Jonah Spangenthal-Lee December 24, 2011

Around 50 Occupy Seattle protesters showed up to heckle police as they evicted two men from a Central District home Friday night.

According to police, a neighbor called SPD yesterday afternoon to report a group of men and women were squatting in a vacant home on 19th Ave and E. Spruce St.

Officers showed up at the home around 11pm last night and told the group to come out of the house. When they didn't, a SWAT team went in and arrested two men. Officers also arrested a third man at the scene after he tried to enter the home during the brief standoff.

Inside the home, police tell PubliCola they found murals painted on the walls, a portable gas stove the two men were using for cooking, and some marijuana.

Officers booked the three men for trespassing, property damage, and a weapons violation.

As officers milled around outside the house, the crowd of protesters—who'd all shown up at the scene after receiving a text message asking them to come support the Occupiers squatting in the home—shouted at police for "taking action against a couple of peaceful artists," a man at the scene said.

Another man read quotes from the Department of Justice's report on the Seattle Police Department—which says officers frequently misuse force—while another man suggested that "since we outnumber them, how about we make a citizens' arrest" of the police officers at the scene.

Several protesters chanted "free Chris Monfort,"—referring to the man accused of fatally shooting one Seattle police officer and wounding another less than a mile away from the scene of Friday's protest—before shifting to "pigs will fall, people will rise."

Another protester yelled back at the group, "police are people, too."

During the back-and-forth, a woman walked out into her yard behind protesters and grumbled, "I've got two kids sleeping. This isn't downtown Seattle" before she went back into her home.
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