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Chess, Drums, Snacks, Sleep and Sheriffs at Santa Cruz Peace Camp 2010
Wednesday, August 4th marked the 31st day and 32nd night of Santa Cruz Peace Camp 2010, which is taking place at the Santa Cruz County Courthouse to protest the Santa Cruz Sleeping Ban, officially known as M.C. 6.36.010, and provide a safer spot for people to sleep at night.
In the afternoon, Ronee Curry, a supporter of folks on the street, brought much joy to the camp with a delivery of burritos, sandwiches and donuts. The traditional Wednesday drum circle, which for years played at the farmer's market, and then on the river levee for several weeks, migrated the weekly ritual to the courthouse lawn.
At about 11:15pm, five sheriff's deputies individually approached, awakened, interrogated, warned, and photographed homeless people sleeping at the County Building and Courthouse. Robert Norse, a homeless rights advocate, reports that angry Peace Camp 2010 residents followed the deputies, denouncing the harassment and invasion of peoples' privacy, as they shined flashlights in the faces of sleeping people. No arrests were reported, however according to Santa Cruz Peace Camp 2010, less than 45 minutes after the action by the Sheriff's deputies, a disabled protester with a heart condition was treated by paramedics then taken by ambulance.