Curtis Hixon Park is Occupied; If arrests, group will pay for bail, Linda Moreno will represent them

10/22/11 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday

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Curtis Hixon Park is Occupied by these 15 activists; the larger group of Occupy Tampa participants is on the sidewalk outside the park in the background.


photo by Seán Kinane

Sunday update: there were no arrests overnight Saturday night - Sunday morning.

Saturday night some members of Occupy Tampa took part of Curtis Hixon Park for a permanent occupation. It happened a few minutes after 10 p.m., when the park closed. In a General Assembly meeting that began after 7 p.m., the finance working group proposed that if anyone is arrested tonight, 75% of Occupy Tampa's funds would be used to bail them out (that comes to a little over $2000). Occupy Tampa accepted that proposal through consensus. Also during the meeting defense attorney Linda Moreno agreed to represent anyone arrested. Moreno is best known in the Tampa Bay area for defending Dr. Sami Al-Arian.

As of 10:20 p.m. there were about 15 people singing and talking inside a small grassy area of Curtis Hixon Park between palm trees. They risk arrest if they refuse police orders to leave the park at night. A much larger group remained nearby on the sidewalk outside the park, where police have told them they can stay as long as they maintain a wide area of sidewalk clear for pedestrians and are up by 6 a.m.

There is a small group within the larger Occupy Tampa group that considers the people who took the park (members of Occupy Tampa's direct action workgroup) to be a splinter group.

At around 11 p.m. a reporter on the scene told WMNF that there were two police there assisting a pregnant woman who had been hit in the chest by a projectile from a moving car (a partly full beer can thrown from a Ford).

Here are more photos.

Here's video of the group inside Curtis Hixon Park after 10 p.m. They plan a permanent occupation:



Some Occupy Tampa protesters march through downtown before a group occupies part of Curtis Hixon Park:



During Saturday night's general assembly, the financial workgroup proposed using 75% of the group's funds to bail out people if they were arrested that night for taking a park. Here's video of the GA reaching consensus supporting the idea:

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Comments

false advertising

It seems odd to me personally that the Occupy Tampa FB, their website, OccupyTampa.org, and press release that was published with out GA approval, all speak to 'Occupy Tampa, AFTER exhausting all legal channels to obtain a park, is collectively taking a park at 7pm Saturday, bring a tent'. This story shows that it was a small group of us that wanted to jump the gun and 'take a public park' while the great majority wanted to remain legal, and present City Council, as we are expected to, with a proposal for occupation with terms and conditions. It made me angry personally to see the whole organization be umbrella'd and co-opted into promoting and publishing the idea that ALL of Occupy Tampa was down with this hasty, ill conceived land grab, especially under the published FALSE premise that we had exhausted all legal channels, which is definitely not true.

This is not false advertising.

This movement is bigger than you, and it will be messy. Don't exhaust yourself trying to control either the minutae or the actions of others involved. Be involved, share your passion, but with the understanding that others are just as involved and passionate as you and will decide their involvement, independently of you. It's ok. Relax and let it grow. If OccupyWallSt. (NYC) had attempted to rein in and control its participants this tightly, you would never have heard of it.

Mr.

The occupy movement is bigger than any one person's agenda. This is not about building your resume. And it's an occupation, not a protest, so anyone who thinks "legal" means have to be exhausted before occupying doesn't realize that the city council will never, ever willingly give Occupy Tampa a park. I think those who are willing to stand up and risk arrest by claiming the park are cool and those who speak out against it are quite frankly posers.

Sam...

Yes you... Why don't you get your knickers untwisted? This movement is about solidarity... Learn it, live it, love it, or gtho.

"Small group"?

There were more than 50 of us on the "Occupy Curtis Hixon" march, and YOU (samantha) tried to call a General Assembly of 20 people to kick out the other 50 people, then raged for two hours about those people "not respecting the will of the GA", even though you tried to call a GA while they were gone to kick them out. A move which, I may add, failed miserably. Stop trying to control everything. Just because you don't agree with something doesn't mean it's not part of Occupy Tampa. This movement is bigger than you, and with every snotty, self-absorbed comment you leave on a Facebook group, website post or WMNF news story, you prove more and more that you're only concerned with your Awake Tampa PARTISAN DEMOCRAT agenda. I highly suspect you're an infiltrator sent by the Democratic party to push us into becoming nothing more than an Obummer reelection apparatus. How much are they paying you, anyways? Or maybe they just told you that if you were a good little worker they'd get you nice seat in the party, eh comrade?

Tyler

...Good point! I've been waiting weeks for someone to say that!

now

i think that Samantha after this one ..can't not any more manipulate OT , and we all have to be carefull that it doesn't happen again , if others are coming to build their resume for a futur back cheap sit in any political party they will face us . we are strong, we don't forgive , we don't forget, be ready

Yeah, true about Samantha

Samantha is definitely a snake in the grass. Her, that Joe Jay guy, and the Tom lawyer guy are definitely trying to take over the movement. Too bad they don't understand that "Occupy" means occupying. They disrespect the other occupy movements around the world.

Lovin that Democratic Republic thingie...

Well... that didn't take long.