Occupy Tampa challenge police orders to leave and win, for now

10/13/11 Kelly Benjamin
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday | Listen to this entire show:


As we reported yesterday, on Tuesday evening Tampa Police officers asked members of the protest group Occupy Tampa to abandon their 24-hour-a-day protest or risk arrest for trespassing. But After challenging the orders, protesters remain.

On Tuesday Tampa Police cited city code 22-8, an ordinance banning the obstruction of streets and sidewalks. However, the Occupy protesters made the case that, despite their sleeping bags, there was still plenty of room on the wide sidewalk outside downtown’s Curtis Hixon Park for pedestrians to get by. After consulting city attorneys and a police official, the protesters prevailed. This is Rugh Cline, a legal liaison between Occupy Tampa and the city.

In contrast to some cities Occupy protests are taking place, Cline says Tampa police have been largely pleasant and respectful despite misunderstanding the law.

"It seemed like the officers did not know the law they were trying to enforce. ..."

Now that the threat of arrest is out of the way, Occupy Tampa protesters say they intend to stay indefinitely. Samantha Bowden is a USF student and organizer with Occupy Tampa.

Bowden says, despite some apparent confusion about what the protest is all about, the grievances of the movement are clear.

Occupy Tampa plans to join other cities across the country this weekend by holding a large general assembly meeting Saturday morning in downtown’s Gaslight Park.

Here's all of our coverage of Occupy Tampa

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Audio Story

Hi Kelly. It's Samantha... Might you be able to send me the audio story. This is the only story I've found and I would like to check out the audio story, PLUS I could use your contact. =) Thanks so much!!! Sam

I need it for my facebook page

Kelly, I need it as soon as possible for my Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Fuck-Glenn-Beck/131399413540135

Get a life losers

Stop complaining about your lame life decisions, do for yourself instead of waiting for hand outs. Have you seen the degenerates at these rallies ??? Hilarious, Put down the hippie lettuce and your misspelled signs and work on some life skills. No wonder suckling off the teat of hard working tax payers is there best option. Some people have more than you, get over it.

Peter Pan Syndrome

Yea, these people are a bunch of idiots. They think camping out with their friends in the middle of the city is trendy and will bring about world peace. These people will never grow up no matter how old they get.


Samantha, if for some reason you cant hear the audio here-this is the story on soundcloud. http://soundcloud.com/kombatrock/occupy-tampa-challenge-police


Go down and talk to Occupy Tampa folks at Voice of Freedom. It's off Main St and Howard in West Tampa. They not idiots or hippie riff raff. They come in all colors, hobbies, occupations, high school drop outs and Ph.Ds. Come sit by the fire and discuss grievances before slinging mud about handouts, if youre gonna gripe about handouts, come do it with us!! The banks and Wall St got the handouts, while it's us, the public who's pist bc we got sold out!