Occupy L.A. Raid Prompts 200 Arrests, City's Largest Police Presence Since 2000 D.N.C.
The largely peaceful clearing of the City Hall encampment brought a record number of law enforcement to downtown Los Angeles.
The park surrounding Los Angeles City Hall was disbanded of its last Occupy residents early Wednesday morning.
After returning to the encampment following Sunday night's ordered eviction from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, many said they would stay despite promises of arrests.
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And they did. The AP reports more than 200 protestors were taken into custody during the largely peaceful raid, with thousands more scattering into the nearby streets -- and a few persistent individuals nesting in the park's trees.
Police used beanbags fired from shotguns to subdue one lingering trio in a makeshift tree house, which they acknowledged as a minor use of force. (No injuries were reported.)
“I said that here in L.A. we’d chart a different path, and we did,” said Mayor Villaraigosa. “In my life, I have never seen a more professional, restrained police force.”
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Approximately 1,400 police officers were dispatched to handle the vacating of the park. Authorities said it was the largest force in the city in over a decade, since the 2000 Democratic National Convention.
No drugs or weapons were found during a search of the camp. And as of 5:10 a.m. PT, the park was clear of protestors, and city workers had put up concrete barriers around the area to keep people out for the duration of the restoration.
A similar Occupy raid in Philadelphia Tuesday night resulted in 50 arrests.