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Occupy Atlanta: APD responsible for two injuries and malicious arrest

(Rob Redding interviews Liliana Bakhtiari and Dee, who were arrested in Atlanta's Woodruff Park on Nov. 5, 2011)

By Robert "Rob" Redding Jr.

Editor & Publisher

ATLANTA, Nov. 6, 2011, 9 a.m. - An Occupy Atlanta protester this morning tells of two injuries and malicious arrests, during a protest at a downtown Atlanta park last night.

In a phone call made just hours after her arrest at Woodruff Park, Liliana Bakhtiari told Redding News Review that police indiscriminately "grabbed" random people to increase the number of arrest.

"A lot of these people had nothing to do with the movement," Bakhtiari said. "They grabbed them because they needed numbers."

Speaking to Redding News Review from jail, she said a man suffered cuts on his face and a woman was struck in the face by a police officer.

"It was much more forceful than it was last time," Bakhtiari said, "which was honestly unnecessary considering that a lot of things that they charged us for they were responsible for. Getting charged with obstructing traffic I found ridiculous, because of the fact that cops where on those horses, they were on their motorcycles and they in turn hit a young man. You shouldn't accuse us of the crimes you are committing."

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Bakhtiari, and a man named Dee, were selected by Occupy Atlanta to be arrested in Woodruff Park, as the others went into the street to protest. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed had promised anyone remaining in the parking after its 11 p.m. closing time would be arrested.

Occupy Atlanta's Tim Franzen said that the police used an officer on a motorcycle bike to taunt the crowd.

"It is was a clearly a tactic on the police side to provoked the crowd to make a riot situation," said Franzen. "They never got what they wanted but that was defiantly an attempt to provoke the crowd, which is scary."

There were 19 arrests at the protest. There were seven women and 12 men arrested. There were at least two journalist among those in custody.

Occupy Atlanta has sought and received the help of leading civil rights activists, including Rev. Jesse Jackson. Jackson spoke to the group hours before the arrests were made. Jackson left before the arrests. Friday, Jackson and Occupy Atlanta also marched on SunTrust.

Atlanta Police Public Affairs Manager Carlos Campos could not be immediately reached for comment at press time.

Listen to the interview:


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