News & Public Affairs


Ferguson solidarity rally in St. Pete to end police violence and militarization listen

09/02/14 Samuel Johnson
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Tags: Race, marijuana, Ferguson, police, police militarization, ACLU, police violence, Michael Brown, rally, arrests, St. Petersburg


Some citizens of St. Petersburg are outraged the at the militarization of the city's police and systemic racial inequality. They gathered in peaceful rally Saturday to show solidarity with the people of Ferguson, Missouri. The protesters' contempt for police injustice isn't a question of better police public relations; it goes much deeper.

Issues like ethnic injustice and inequality have reverberated around the country following the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. So...

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Poor People Economic Human Rights Campaign blocked by police during Monday's second major march on the RNC listen

08/28/12 Josh Holton
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Despite a tropical storm warning, school closures, and the postponed Republican convention activities in Tampa, the second major protest of Monday kicked off in the afternoon in the city’s downtown financial district. The Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign organized a large non-permitted march starting in “Romneyville.”

Khaki clothed police officers on bicycles escorted the southbound march for half a mile down Tampa Street, which leads to the RNC venue. Several children ...

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Hillsborough Public Defender office prepares for arrests during GOP convention listen

08/22/12 Seán Kinane
Last Call Wednesday
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The Republican National Convention’s kick-off party is Sunday in St. Petersburg. There are at least three major protests planned outside Tropicana Field that day and many more once the official events move to Tampa on Monday.

If previous political conventions are any measure there will be dozens, if not hundreds of arrests. On this show we found out about how people caught up in arrests will get processed and what their court experience might be like.

Joining us to talk about this w...

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Occupy Tampa member injured during October arrest has charge dropped listen

05/15/12 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Last fall when members of Occupy Tampa continuously occupied a sidewalk in front of downtown’s Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, police made dozens of arrests – most of them for misdemeanor trespassing; but early in the morning on October 28, three people were arrested on more serious charges.

Two of them were charged with battery on a law enforcement officer and a third, Karel Soucre, was charged with obstructing or opposing an officer.

Soucre was one of the camera operators filming ...

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A Civil Libertarian Describes Events at the Last GOP Convention in Minnesota

04/26/12 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday)
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Good morning, welcome to Radioactivity. In four months Tampa will host the Republican National Convention. When delegates, staff, journalists and demonstrators are counted as many as 50,000 people will be in the area for the convention.

The mayor of Tampa has proposed a large "clean-zone" around the convention site in downtown Tampa in which certain items and activities will be restricted.

Four years ago the city of St. Paul Minnesota hosted the Republican Convention. And to get an id...

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Videos: 29 Occupy Tampa members arrested while camping in Riverfront Park listen

12/02/11 Josh Holton
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Tampa Police say overnight they arrested 29 members of Occupy Tampa in a riverside park west of downtown. Before the arrests about 40 people attempted to camp on a hill inside the park, but many people complied with police orders to leave.

The hilltop encampment in Julian Lane Riverfront Park was in plain view for police helicopters. More than a dozen...


Occupy Tampa protester arrested Saturday for trespassing in the park listen

10/31/11 Josh Holton
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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This weekend another protester with Occupy Tampa was arrested. Tampa Police have now arrested 12 occupiers in total. 55-year-old diabetic Christopher Villanueva was arrested at 3 in the afternoon on Saturday for trespassing in Curtis-Hixon Park. He has posted bond, and was released an hour ago. Although he used to work, he has been homeless and unemployed since an assault left him wi...

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Three members of Occupy Tampa arrested Friday; Protesters say video disputes battery charges listen

10/28/11 Josh Holton
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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At about 3 o’clock this morning the Tampa Police Department arrested three protesters from the Occupy Tampa movement on the sidewalk in front of Curtis Hixon Park. WMNF’s Josh Holton reports, video shows Corporal L.J. Miles and about a dozen police told the group to remove newly-erected tents, and arrested the first of three protesters, Karel Soucre.

Protester Samantha Bowden said Soucre is originally from Venezuela. She said he is seeking political asylum in the U.S. He has visited th...


Activists jailed for protesting Palm Beach County fossil fuel plant listen

02/03/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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In West Palm Beach yesterday, two environmentalists were jailed and five others received probation for protesting the construction of a planned new natural gas fired power plant last February.

The protest had involved the activists linking themselves with chicken wire and PVC pipe to protest the negative effects they say the plant will have the environment.

Originally, 27 activists werearrested after the protests at the site Florida Power and Light’s West County Energy Center, but ...

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Activist Kelly Benjamin arrested at the RNC listen

09/04/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Protests continued today in St. Paul, at the site of the Republican National Convention. The largest arrests took place on Monday – and among those swept up was Tampa activist Kelly Benjamin.

Benjamin wasn’t released from jail until 3 a.m. today. Benjamin told WMNF that the arrests have created a chilling effect in St. Paul.

Benjamin ran for City Council in Tampa back in 2003.

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