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Related Categories: California | Immigrant Rights
Los Angeles Police shoot projectiles at rally
by LA Indymedia
Tuesday May 1st, 2007 8:06 PM
There are some scattered reports coming in about police opening fire with rubber bullets at the MacArthur Park endpoint of a very large march supporting amnesty for undocumented immigrants. A TV news station gave an estimate of 150,000, so you could set that as a conservative estimate. More complete newswire stories should be submitted in a few hours, so I'll just link to the front page of their site.
Because there were a couple CNN cameramen right in the middle of this, great footage was already shown on national TV, of many police in riot gear spreading across a park, with quite a few shooting many rounds of rubber bullets or wooden dowels. Quite a few very old and young people were seen in the fleeing crowd, and people with heavy bags, or popsicle and hot dog carts had a difficult time getting out of the way. Right in front of the CNN cameraman, several police really didn't give a damn what this appeared like, and continued to prod and shove a lady who had fallen on the ground over her purse as someone else was helping her up. At the same time, some individual officers were leaving some people (such as a vendor) alone, and weren't sweeping them all along.

The reporter there was as confused as anyone, and was saying that there was no announcement ordering people to leave the area, and that police were refusing to make comments, so they'd have to update everyone on the reason in a few hours. They said that it was basically an overreaction to a small altercation, and so they retaliated against everyone. Overall, the video of the people hit by bullets and families fleeing the police tell the story.

This whole scene gave an strong sense of deja vu of a similar scene in 2000 at the Democratic convention (so long ago... yet Bush is still here!). There was a convergence station by MacArthur park, and several of the same businesses visible. At the Staples center, police opened fire at the Rage Against the Machine Concert because they said that snapple bottles were thrown over the fence surrounding the 'free speech zone' some distance from the convention center. There had initially been a ring of trees around this parking lot, but they were chopped down after one day. Then, with only a small 1-2 carlength gap in the fence to allow people to enter and exit, they started opening fire with hard rubber balls at the crowd of young people who came for the concert.

Here, a local news station says that the justification today was essentially the same thing, that someone had thrown a bottle.
In the video clip there, the news anchor is calling an event where police and some demonstrators are pushing a 'riot' even though it's unclear how that started.
Listed below are the latest comments about this post.
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Telemundo 52linkWednesday May 2nd, 2007 7:30 AM
crazyReporterWednesday May 2nd, 2007 12:03 AM
Statement by National Immigrant Solidarity Network re: LAPD attackLee Siu Hin (reposted by danielsan)Tuesday May 1st, 2007 11:58 PM
More linkscpTuesday May 1st, 2007 8:13 PM
Alert! Los Angeles Police Brutally Attacks Immigrant Marchers!ISNTuesday May 1st, 2007 8:10 PM
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