The NYPD 'consistently violated basic rights' during the Occupy Wall Street protests and showed a 'shocking level of impunity', when dealing with protesters, according to a new study (pdf), published on Wednesday.
The report, by the Global Justice Clinic at New York University's
School of Law and the Walter Leitner International Human Rights Clinic
at Fordham Law School, conducted over an eight month period, examined
hours of video footage, documents, press reports, and conducted
extensive interviews with protestors and witnesses from the Occupy
protests and encampments. The findings paint a disturbing portrait:
authorities across the US will now suppress protest at all cost, even if
protests are lawful, peaceful, and of no threat to the general public.
The study details the increasingly common practices of "excessive
police use of force against protesters, bystanders, journalists, and
legal observers; constant obstructions of media freedoms, including
arrests of journalists; unjustified and sometimes violent closure of
public space, dispersal of peaceful assemblies, and corralling and
trapping protesters en masse," the report states.
"Pervasive surveillance of peaceful political activity, arbitrary and
selective rule enforcement, and restrictions on independent protest
monitoring also raise serious concerns. The government has also failed
to make transparent critical policies concerning law enforcement