Bloomberg, NYPD ignoring court order permitting protesters back into Zuccotti park

UPDATE: 12:22 PM – Via Karen McVeigh, a reporter with the Guardian:

#OWS lawyer says a high court judge signed emergency order at 6.30am within an hour they had served all lawyers involved but police refused

OWS claims 5,000 books were destroyed in park overnight by NYPD.

UPDATE: 12:20PM – Police putting away barricades at Zuccotti Park, because of court order?

UPDATE: NYPD arrests NPR reporter, with press badge visible.

Julie Walker, a freelance radio reporter for National Public Radio, said she was arrested while trying to report on the protests overnight, while wearing her NYPD-issued press identification. Walker said she spent three to four hours in custody before she was released around 7 a.m. She was given a desk appearance ticket.

“When I was let out I just went straight back to work,” Walker said.

This seems a coordinated strategy to usurp media coverage of the raid last night.  As we note below, Mayor Bloomberg gave a quote worthy of Mao or Stalin (or Orwell), about restricting freedom of the press in order to protect the press.

UPDATE: NYPD threw NY Post reporter in a choke hold:

At a news conference after the park was cleared Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg defended the police behavior, saying that the media was kept away “to prevent a situation from getting worse and to protect members of the press.”

Some members of the media said they were shoved by the police. As the police approached the park they did not distinguish between protesters and members of the press, said Lindsey Christ, a reporter for NY1, a local cable news channel. “Those 20 minutes were some of the scariest of my life,” she said.

Ms. Christ said that police officers took a New York Post reporter standing near her and “threw him in a choke-hold.”

Watch the confrontation between NYPD and OWS protesters live, right now, on UStream. Here’s a second stream if that one conks out.

A bit of a mess in NYC. Protesters won a temporary restraining order last night, permitting them back into the park, but so far the NYPD and the city have been refusing to obey it. Reports on Twitter, at the scene, confirm that people are being arrested for going back into the park, which the TRO permits them to do. So the police, and the city, are ignoring a lawful order of a court. Here’s a snapshot of the court order. And here’s a picture of police cordoning off the park, and another.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in New York City, and is the cofounder of TimeToResign.com. Bio, .

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