Occupy Rochester protest shuts down East Avenue
Posted at: 07/21/2012 10:25 PM | Updated at: 07/22/2012 12:04 PM
An Occupy Rochester protest shut down East Avenue for a brief period Saturday evening as a group of over 150 people marched westward down the street and sidewalk. The protest is believed to have begun in Washington Square, and at some point it poured onto East Avenue.
At one point, Rochester Police vehicles began following the protesters as they moved down the street. Then marchers ran into a wall of officers near the intersection of East Avenue and Union Street.
One of the protesters, Laura Brown describes the scene saying, "The police standing in a line, smacking their batons threateningly on the hands and spraying pepper spray at us."
Police say they began arresting individuals when they refused to disperse. But marchers continued to push past officers moving mostly onto the sidewalk and side of street. The march continued for a short distance west on East Avenue, even passing by the News10NBC building.
Police say they arrested 18 individuals for disorderly conduct. Among the arrested was Emily Good, who you may remember was arrested last summer while videotaping a traffic stop outside her home.
Laura Brown says the protest was an attempt to re-ignite the Occupy Movement in Rochester. She also believes the arrest will inspire the movement rather than stop it.
"It's always going to be my response and the response of everyone I know is just going to be to keep doing it stronger, faster," says Brown. "I also think it will bring more people in to see how things are and it's just going to increase our ranks."
Some of the arrested have been released on bail, and police say they will have more information regarding the arrests on Monday.