NYCLU Observer Arrested During OWS March

A New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) Observer was arrested this week in the recent OWS march in front of the MTA building. The Observer who was clearly not violating the law was reportedly confronted by Deputy Inspector Johnny Cardona — the officer made infamous by punching protester Felix Rivera-Pitre. A video shows that officer Cardona allegedly grabbed OWS coordinator, Katherine Bromberg and pulled her into the street before putting her under arrest. The charges were later dropped. The site identified the officer as Cardona, though regardless of his identity, the arrest appears without a legal basis or cause. Once again, while the charges were dropped, there is no indication that the officer would be investigated for such an arrest of an observer in the course of a protected activity.

Just for the record, I am still co-lead counsel with Dan Schwartz of Bryan Cave in the World Bank case (Chang v. United States) where journalists and legal observers were arrested in a mass arrest by the District of Columbia and federal government near the White House.

The march was part of a training session for Occupy Wall Street and ended up in front of 2 Broadway, the MTA’s Materiel Division and Solicitation Management Unit.

This was one of the prior videos that made Cardona so well-known nationally:

Once again, regardless if this proves to be Cardona, the arrest is a continuation of the pattern in Washington and New York regarding journalists and observers at these marches. The video linked above shows Bromberg talking calmly with the officer before being pulled into the street for an arrest. At a minimum, the NYPD should confirm the charges sworn out by the officer.

We will be following the story as it unfolds.

Source: Gothamist

Kudos: Kimberly Wilder

29 thoughts on “NYCLU Observer Arrested During OWS March”

  1. Jill,

    Why do I need to comment on the “meat”? I’m in complete agreement that our police are being militarized. But you were off the mark on our mayors. Thought it could stand a correction..

  2. Curious, I’m happy that, as an older person, you are able to find and correct important errors in what people are saying! I’m surprised though that you ended your comment at the correction. Often, older people are also able to comment on the “meat” of what is being said, in this case that the police are literally militarized and arrayed against citizens engaging in lawful activity.

    For young and old alike, here is some important information: “Four New York City Council members sued the city over the handling of Occupy Wall Street protestors, claiming the police used excessive force and should be subject to an outside monitor.

    The Police Department made false arrests and violated free- speech rights of protestors and journalists last year, according to a complaint filed today in Manhattan federal by the council members and 11 others. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), Brookfield Office Properties and Mayor Michael Bloomberg are among the defendants.” Bloomberg news (now that’s irony!)

  3. Jill,

    No, I’m old and I cannot think of any Chicago mayor that was convicted; neither Daley, Bryne, Washington, or Daley. That covers a lot of years. On the other hand, our governors…

  4. P.S. I’m not sure if I should correct exorcizing to exercising!

    I also should have mentioned that CBS has a leaked memo showing that satrap of Chicago, Robbie Emauel, has ordered plans for the complete evacuation of Chicago during an “incident” he feels may happen in the upcoming NATO summit. They are doing everything they can to prevent free speech in Chicago!

  5. interesting thought. most likely. Good for PD et al to have the message to go nationwide. Will he get a stripe for it? No.

    As for it being the same deputy inspector, well the PD may want to get rid of him, so give him more rope, and he’ll hang himself.

    BTW, since court costs and lawyer fees have put a stop to civil suits against the state here. please advise the caveats on this:

    “Attorneys fees are awarded under Section 1988. “

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