Despite violence throughout the nation, including unnecessary pepper-spraying in California and arrests up and down the East Coast, Occupy D.C. members are still trying to spread the word of social equality and accountability for the rich and powerful.
While police have used forceful tactics in their effort to get people to stop peacefully protesting and enjoying their constitutional rights to do so, it's possible that a majority of the arrests that were made were done so unlawfully. Our Washington D.C. criminal defense lawyers
believe that what has been going on nationwide is a symbol of our freedom of speech and a collective effort to hold certain businesses accountable for their actions.
Many people arrested in the Occupy movement have been older folks who fully understand what they're doing. Others are college students who may not understand the long-term implications of an arrest. Protest arrests in D.C. should be vigorously contested.
Even being charged with a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct, resisting arrest or another crime that law enforcement allege can have serious consequences to a young person.
This can lead to extended jail time, probation, fines and fees, community service and other court-ordered sanctions. The charges can lead to embarrassment as well. But considering the news media coverage, it can also lead to job loss, disqualification from college or scholarships and other future plans that may be important to a person. That's why ensuring someone is fighting these charges on your behalf is critical.
Two recent news stories show that the movement is going strong in Washington, D.C. The Washington Post reports that three Occupy members have started a hunger strike in order to support democracy in the District and full voting rights for residents.
This is a side group to the Occupy movement called Occupy the Vote D.C. and calls for legislative and budgetary autonomy and full representation and voting rights in Congress.
In other news, protesters recently took over K Street as officers made more than 60 arrests as people blocked four key intersections for much of the day one recent Wednesday. The protest lasted more than an hour after a standoff between protesters and Metropolitan police officers.
The people set up tents and linked arms on the busy street and many faced a charge of blocking a highway. Police used loudspeakers to warn protesters to stop. When they wouldn't, police moved in and began arresting people, tying wrists with plastic strips.
Other law enforcement agencies were called in to help with crowd control and to ensure that drivers wouldn't run over protesters. Protesters tipped over newspaper boxes to use to block traffic and stand atop. Police horses were used to move the crowd.