Sunday, August 31, 2008

More Hijinks at the Republican National Convention.

Picture posted on flickr by: waitingline

Following similar patterns from large scale protests and past Conventions, the police have continued to harass, threaten and disrupt people's constitutional rights of free assembly.

Now we move on to the Republican National Convention being held in the Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Last week the police stopped members of the New York Based Glass Bead Collective and confiscated their laptops and video equipment. Thanks to hard work of the National Lawyers Guild they got it back, except for the $100.00 cash, that was a welcome fee from the office of Homeland Insecurity.

Over the weekend the cops with nothing better to do but raid convergence spaces and harass people were at it again...must have needed more cash. And you'll never guess what they claimed their reasoning was...Anarchists!!

Got this message from Eileen Clancey of I-Witness video yesterday:

"This is Eileen Clancy.
The house that I-Witness Video where is staying in St. Paul has been
surrounded by police. We are in town to cover the Republican National
Convention. We have locked all the doors. We have been told that if we
leave we will be detained. One of our people who was caught outside is
being detained in handcuffs in front of the house. The police say that
they are waiting to get a search warrant. More than a dozen police are
wielding firearms, including one St. Paul officer with a long gun, which
someone told me is an M-16.

At least one local TV crew is here along with some legal observers. Our
colleagues at Glass Bead Collective are outside videotaping.

We are suffering a preemptive video arrest.

Please contact the office of the St. Paul mayor. I am not in a position
to do Internet research so if someone else could look that up and also
contact news media in town for the RNC and local news media, that would be

All the best,

There was this article in the Star Tribune:

Police raid RNC protest sites in Twin Cities
By Abby Simons, Heron Marquez Estrada and Bill McAuliffe, Star Tribune
August 30, 2008 - 6:26 PM

Ramsey County authorities conducted raids across Minneapolis and St. Paul Friday and Saturday as a pre-emptive strike against disruptive protests of the Republican National Convention.

Five people were arrested and more than 100 were handcuffed, questioned and released by scores of deputies and police officers, according to police and elected officials familiar with the raids.

In a statement Saturday morning, Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher said the St. Paul raid targeted the RNC Welcoming Committee, a group he described as "a criminal enterprise made up of 35 self-described anarchists...intent on committing criminal acts before and during the Republican National Convention."

Full article Here.

Then I got this message:

"This is Eileen. The house raid is over. We have been released from our
cuffs and the police have our house. Our belongings were searched. But we
have not inventoried them so we do not yet know yet if something is

5 other I-Witness Video folks were detained, both on bicycles and in a
rental car. Moments ago, I heard that 3 were released. We do not know the
status of the other 2.

Please keep phoning the St. Paul Mayor's office. Many thanks for your
calls and ongoing support.

I will write later."

- Eileen

Then later I got ths:

"Hello folks,
All of our people have been released. As you know from our earlier
messages, several of us experienced a house raid earlier today. Two
others who were in a car were picked up and held for four hours. Three
people were also detained for a couple of hours.

There was a significant media presence documenting our detention --
several local television stations, the NY Times, NPR station WNYC,
Democracy Now and others.

Now we need to take some time to document what has happened to us and
re-group with our people.

We all received many e-mails and phone calls. Thanks again for calling the
St. Paul Mayor's office.

We will write again soon."

- Eileen Clancy

Ah, this is why the terrorists hate us. Because we are so "Free." Nothing more threatening to the security of the RNC delegates then an overturned dumpster by a "self-described" anarchist.


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