Hennepin County has started a PR campaign against Occupy MN. Attached is a defamatory press release sent out today at 4:30 pm by the Sheriff’s office. It emphasized the cost of the police and detailed a list of incidents at the camp over the past 2 weeks.
Tonight the TV news reported on a box of bricks labeled “riot equipment” left at the Plaza without saying that the person who left it was a provocateur that the protesters had been watching. The protesters told the police who left the box and even pointed him out on the light rail platform. They watched in despair as the police briefly questioned him and then released him. In the attached picture you can see the box of bricks with the very childish and provocative note: “Riot Equipment: NEEDS: bricks, large but throwable stones, and gasoline.” For the media to imply that the box might have been left by a protester was a travesty.
Provocateurs are expected in this movement, but such biased media reporting needs to be exposed.
Earlier in the day (2pm) county police had told the organizers that they had to remove tarps, which are essential to keeping materials dry. After the organizers contacted County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin, within half an hour they were told it was a miscommunication.
We need to call the Hennepin County Commissioners to tell them to take provocateurs seriously and to let the protesters have tents for sleeping in the cold. Privately the police admit that they had way too many police on duty the first two weeks of the camp; they should own up to this publicly when stating the cost.
Chair of Hennepin County Commissioners is Mike Opat, 612-348-7881.
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