OWS Librarians Sue Mayor Bloomberg, NYPD, and City of New York Over November 15 Middle-of-the-Night Raid
Remember the November 15 NYPD raid of Zuccotti Park, when the occupation site was cleared, journalists were kept from the scene, and a large number of books from the Occupy Wall Street People's Library were trashed? Well today OWS and the OWS librarians filed a lawsuit against Mayor Bloomberg, who authorized the raid, as well as the City of New York and the NYPD.
Here are details via the People's Library site:
A lawsuit will be filed tomorrow, May 24, in Manhattan Federal Court seeking redress for the destruction of books, materials and equipment from the popular and respected People’s Library of Occupy Wall Street (OWS). NYPD raided and forcibly evicted Occupy Wall Street, including the People’s Library, from its Liberty Square camp (also known as Zuccotti Park) on November 15, 2011. The middle-of-the night raid, by members of the NYPD and other city agencies, was authorized by NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Journalists were prevented from witnessing the attack; some were arrested. The raid struck not only at Constitutional rights but at a fundamental tool of enlightenment – thousands of library books and materials were destroyed.
AlterNet contributor Melissa Gira Grant live-tweeted today's 11am filing. Here are some of her tweets from this morning, with quotes from Norm Siegel, who filed the complaint:
Siegal: destruction of books unconstitutional. Suit seeks to find who carried this illegal act out.— Melissa Gira Grant (@melissagira) May 24, 2012
Siegal: law in Fed district we are requires a free hearing before deprivation of rights (seizure).— Melissa Gira Grant (@melissagira) May 24, 2012
Siegal: other cities have Occupiets ample time. Bloomberg gave at most 45 minutes. That's impossible.— Melissa Gira Grant (@melissagira) May 24, 2012
Siegal: seeking damages, $43K for books. Also punitive damages. Not just violation of rights. Actions of city reckless, callous indifference— Melissa Gira Grant (@melissagira) May 24, 2012
A lot of ppl associate this kind of conduct -- destruction if books -- which worst kind of regimes imaginable.— Melissa Gira Grant (@melissagira) May 24, 2012