Breaking: Tear gas and flash grenades in Oakland


UPDATE: Police have issued another dispersal order, declaring an unlawful assembly anwyhere on Broadway past 14th Street.

UPDATE: I'm getting reports that police have told media they're planning to arrest everyone in the camp.

UPDATE: I just spoke to the Guardian's Yael Chanoff, who was on the scene when police broke out the tear gas. She said it went off at least three or four times, and that a line of riot police was stationed on 16th Street nearby Frank Ogawa Plaza, the site of the encampment which has been renamed Oscar Grant Plaza by Occupy Oakland.

Chanoff said a standoff between police and protesters was continuing near 16th and Broadway, where protesters had taken over an abandoned building (see below for details). They'd erected barricades on either side of the street in an effort to hold onto the building, but soon police arrived in riot gear and blocked off street entrances. A barricade at 15th and Broadway was reportedly set ablaze but the fire was later put out by some protesters using fire extinguishers.

"There's lingering tear gas in the air all throughout the camp," she told me.

There are reports that police have fired rubber bullets at protesters as well. It seems the conflict in the streets is wearing on.

Here's the original report:

Reports from Oakland are that police have moved in with tear gas and flash grenades in the downtown area, following a day of peaceful marches and rallies that drew tens of thousands into the streets and to the Port of Oakand for a General Strike.

Police in riot gear reportedly lined up at 17th and San Pablo and 17th and Broadway a little after midnight and issued a dispersal order to the hundreds of protesters who remained in the streets nearby Frank Ogawa Plaza, declaring it to be an unlawful assembly between the 1500 and 1600 blocks of Telegraph and Broadway. Oakland North on Twitter is reporting arrests, loud explosions, and a fire in the intersection of 15th and Broadway. Some fear police are trying to retake the Occupy Oakland encampment.

A little over an hour ago, protesters took over an abondoned building at 520 16th Street that previously housed the Travelers' Aid Society and announced they wanted to turn it into a school and a crisis center, named Raheim Brown Community Center and Free School after a police shooting victim.


for once again getting front page coverage for rioting, breaking windows, starting fires and provoking violence, especially after what appears to be a day of peaceful, productive protest. way to shoot yourself, and your message, in the foot.

am I crazy for thinking that the Bayview woman who "occupied" her house that is in foreclosure is 10x more sympathetic compared to what is going on in Oakland, despite the fact that she didn't make a single payment on her mortgage?? I think that if there was a mass movement to do what she is doing, and ended up forcing banks to re-negotiate or to take a softer stance on the foreclosures, that there would be tangible, positive results, instead of more and more bad press that is getting the OWS movement nowhere.

the whole thing is just turning sad

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 8:37 am

turn nasty at some point. The combination of the boredom of camping out for weeks, the onset of winter weather, petty crime at the camps and of course the fact that the Banks don't show the slightest sign of changing anything all imply that the movement would lose patience and impetus, and likely cross the line into anarchic, anti-scial behavior

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 9:58 am

What a bunch of morons! I'm all for free speech and your right to PEACEFULLY protest but when you get stupid and start throwing bottles, feces and whatever else at the Police then it's time you got your ass kicked! The Officers working there are part of the 99% too and are working to provide for their families just like everyone else!

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 11:13 am

This movement has crossed the line, as many anticipated.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 11:43 am

Everything was peaceful yesterday except for a couple of incidents of property damage, and now the police are using military tactics on peaceful protesters?

If Quan ordered this, I take back what I said about giving her the benefit of the doubt.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 11:59 am

pieces of concrete and molotov cocktails at police?

How is it "peaceful" to break into buildings, smash windows in food stores, and set fires?

How could the police not react to that?

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 12:15 pm

The first case, if it did happen -I have no evidence, but that would be a defensive action against an unprovoked police riot. Most protesters resisted non-violently even then, but some may have excersized their rights to self-defense.

In the second case, we're talking about a couple of incidents amidst thousands of people. If this is a reaction to that, then it is a case of collective punishment. Among other things, that's against the Geneva Conventions.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 12:28 pm

you're bringing the Geneva Conventions into this? To quote Charlie Brown: Good grief!

and a defensive action to an unprovoked police riot? you can't really say that with a straight face. From EVERYTHING I've read the police held back for a long time yesterday and only took action once one of them was assaulted by a bottle to the face. Smashing windows didn't cause the action. Setting fires didn't cause the action. Attacking a cop caused the action, and can you really blame the cops at that point?

I really think that this movement is shooting itself in the foot and alienating itself from a lot of people who support the broader message of corporate greed/non-accountability

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 1:34 pm

A protester threw a piece of concrete or something at a cop... what, out of the blue?For absolutely no reason at all? The cops were just standing there minding their own business, "holding back" as you say, and then some protester assaulted a cop?


And yes, The Geneva Conventions are very clear that collective punishment of a group, for the actions of an individual or a few individuals is a violation. It's instilled in us from a very early age that America is a beacon of democracy and human rights. Human rights abuses are things that happen in other countries. Obviously this comes as a big shock to you, but the reality is very different. It's time for America to wake up to that reality.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 1:53 pm

right or appropriate to throw a rock at a cop? By defintion, the cop was some distance from the perp. So even if the perp believed that the cops might harm him, that's still an insame way to react? There was no imminent danger.

And there were many protestors throwing missiles. Having previously broken windows, started fires and broken into buildings.

It is completely irresponsible to condone that, and even the SFBG hasn't done that.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:15 pm

Well that gives away what you are.

Explain this to me... in what circumstance is it right or appropriate to fire a tear gas cannister into someone's face? The perp was close enough to Scott Olsen to see what he was doing, and in the video the assault appears to be a deliberate attempt to maim. Why hasn't the perp been arrested for this brutal assault -the only assault which caused any injury to a human being (as opposed to a bank window)? By my definition, that makes it the worst crime of the entire protest, and yet the perp is walking around scot free.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:44 pm

breaking up a crowd engaged in illegal activity which is why it is used the world over for crowd control. Any other method would have been MORE dangerous to the mob.

The perp (I use that term as he was engaged in an illegal assault) could have avoided the situtation by vacating the building he was illegally occupying, having previously broken in (another crime).

AND he was given warning, notice and the opportunity to elave peacefully. Sorry, Greg, but you are just making yourself look completely stupid and unreasonable by supporting illegal, violent behavior, and I fully support the police here, as do all fair-minded people.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:55 pm

firing a tear gas cannister directly into someone's face for no reason at all? Scott Olsen wasn't doing anything to provoke the perp's illegal assault. Yet you support the perp. It says a lot about your mentality that some broken window means more to you than a *really* violent attack against a human being that left the person in a coma.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 4:43 pm

happened then you're being wilfully ignorant. you clearly don't believe the many press, radio and TV reports that said it happened.

Your "right to self-defense" doesn't include throwing rocks at cops trying to clear a building that you have broken into. What other kinds of blind nonsense will you utter rather than admit that this mob got ugly and broke the law.

Maybe it wasn't all of them, but they have betrayed your "movement". You should denounce them, not excuse them.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 1:43 pm

I guess you all missed the pres conference that Oakland Police chief Jordan gave that he knew it was outside agitators causing the problems and not the Occupiers.

Posted by Jerry Jarvis on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 1:37 pm

or breaks a window, they immediately become an "ousdie agitator" or "government infiltrator".

It clearly never occurs to you that any movement that involves one illegal act will likely lead to others.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 1:45 pm
Posted by matlock on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:18 pm

the bailouts, they were done according to the law at the time.

There have been some convictions for a few who actually committed fraud. and the remedy is to do more of that, rather than throwing rocks at some poor cop who is probably struggling just as much as you and I to pay his mortgage.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:29 pm

Where is the proof of this?

If there is no proof, then the people saying this are liars.
Nothing new for Fox News, the Oakland Police, and the Right Wing Reactionaries here.

Here are the lies from the right wing keyboard brigade:

"Yep, there were molotov cocktails too"
Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 11:43 am

"how is it "peaceful" to throw rocks,
pieces of concrete and molotov cocktails at police?"
Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 12:15 pm

Posted by matlock on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:16 pm

I'm sure you can still find it.

Of course, you'll say they're all part of a vast right-wing conspiracy.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:28 pm

That's your responsibility.

I've seen plenty of videos of police throwing flashbang grenades, which they initially lied about and denied before their lie was exposed.
They also lied and said they did not use rubber bullets.
Until it was proven otherwise.
So we're dealing with a group of proven liars here, which includes you.

I have yet to see any video of these molotov cocktails, pipe throwing, etc.
Why is that?

Posted by matlock on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 3:01 pm

I said SFGate reported it. So who do I believe? The newspaper of a major US city or a troll on the internet? Hmm, tough one.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 3:21 pm

You should do more reading before repeating a load of lies.
Do you really believe everything posted on SFGate?

Where is the video of molotov cocktails?
It does not exist.
Because it never happened.

It's nothing more than a myth repeated by useful idiots like yourself.

Posted by matlock on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 4:04 pm

But readers have a clear choice - to believe a major US newspaper or to believe an anonymous internet troll.

I don't fancy your odds.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 4:09 pm

"The police statement denied that officers had used rubber bullets or flash-bang grenades."

On Wednesday, protesters displayed rubber bullets and beanbags they said were fired at them the night before. Jordan said his department used the beanbags but not rubber bullets, but that other agencies may have used the rubber bullets.

The molotov cocktail stories you have gleefully repeated here are just more police lies, relayed from the cops to the AP to the Chronicle, then consumed without question by you.
If they were not lies, they could easily be supported with video evidence.

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 5:15 pm

That pretty much sums up the corporate press. They bow before authority and dutifully copy the official pronouncements of officialdom. This is the way they operate with the Pentagon, and this is the way they operate with the police.

I did a quick internet search, and it's true that there doesn't seem to be any independent verification. All the sources point back to the same police statements.
This is not to say that there were no molotov cocktails, just that we should all reserve judgement until we hear independent verification. And the media really should be more responsible with what they report. If they reported that at all, they should have reported it as an unverified claim, which is what it is.

One thing that's clear, is that the cops escalated the situation by trying to evict the people who occupied that foreclosed property. They should have de-escalated the situation and continued to hold back, at least for the time being.

Posted by Greg on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 6:50 pm

break into and illegally enter private property. If a mob broke into your home, you'd presumably be grateful if the cops retook it, and this is no different.

Ratehr than defend those who assaulted the police for merely doing their job and obeying orders, you might instead ask what the Occupy movement needs to do to keep it's only rank and file in check. The movement is sabotaging itself by such actions, and giving the authorities every pretext they need to crush it.

Think, man, think.

Posted by Anonymous on Nov. 04, 2011 @ 10:00 am

Hypocrisy much...??

They're propping up those they pretend to demonize- investing big bucks with the purported "1%."

Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:25 pm

that's the pension money of teachers, nurses, cops and firemen.

They criticize hedge funds in public but just love those leveraged profits, even though they know hedge funds short companies and put them out of business, encourage companies to offshore costs and fight unions.


Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 2:41 pm
Posted by Guest on Nov. 03, 2011 @ 3:01 pm