Six activists protesting bank foreclosures were arrested after occupying Chase bank on Market Street in downtown San Francisco this afternoon (Thurs/29) as part of a broader action organized to mirror the Occupy Wall Street protests in New York City.
Brenda Reed, Tanya Dennis, William Chorneau, Manny S. Tucker, Gabriel Haaland, and Claire Haas were all arrested inside Chase on Market and Second streets while hundreds rallied outside, according to Guardian City Editor Steven T. Jones, who is there at the scene. The occupation was staged following a march that originated at San Francisco's Goldman Sachs offices at 555 California Street and then progressed to the offices of CitiBank, Charles Schwab, and Chase.
The arrests prompted protesters to chant, "Let those people go! Arrest the CEO!" They also chanted, "Go, Brenda, go!" and "Shame on Chase!"
When they first entered the downtown San Francisco bank, Reed, who has battled a Chase foreclosure for two years, demanded to speak to the CEO. "You have put me through hell, and devastated my health," she told the bank manager.
"Just to let you know, we are compassionate to your cause," the manager responded, but was greeted by shouts of "No, you're not!" from the crowd.
When Reed and her small group of supporters were asked to leave, they refused. As of 5:20 p.m., there was still a crowd of hundreds protesting out front.
UPDATE: They've been released, and Reed made the following statement to the crowd: "Chase Bank is trying to steal my home of 38 years."
She said, "It's government-sanctioned, nationalized fraud," and added, "there are thousands and thousands and thousands of people like me, all over California."
Video by Steven T. Jones