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Occupy Protesters Want Mercedes Driver Prosecuted


US Politics & Gov't  (tags: occupy oakland, ows, violence, police, government, freedoms )

William
- 988 days ago - sfgate.com
Oakland police have done little to investigate an incident in which two Occupy Oakland protesters were hit by a car as they marched down Broadway during the movement's general strike, attorneys for the victims said Friday.



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Comments

William K. (328)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 10:11 am
Related stories:

Okland Mayor Uses Shooting Incident to Close Down Occupy Oakland

Oakland Laying Groundwork for Occupy Eviction

Occupy Oakland Campers Defy City Demand to Leave
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 12:31 pm
Thank you, William!
 

Betsy Bee (1045)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 12:39 pm
I am sure the Oakland Police were delighted by the incident.
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 2:27 pm
They should be prosecuted to the limit.
 

Mary G. (50)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 2:37 pm
Again. No one wants to listen to the other person. Sad.
 

William K. (328)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 2:51 pm
There is no excuse for the driver to have charged into the crowd with his car. No one disputes that the driver is guilty of having done so. Even if the protestor had slapped the hood of the car unprovoked (although witnesses say that the driver was already driving into the crowd and had already bumped into the guy), it is no excuse to risk people's lives just because one is impatient and inconvenienced. The police say that they are looking into an assault with a deadly weapons charge. It seems to me that attempted murder would be appropriate. The driver should have been arrested on the spot. There should be no reason why it is taking this long to process this case. Given the utter lack of controversy as to whether or not this person committed these acts, I see no reason why anyone should be keeping an open mind about assault with a deadly weapon.

The only controversy is why it is taking the police so long to bring the perpetrator to justice.

 

Jae A. (323)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 3:12 pm
I'd say in other cases there would have been attempted murder charges filed on someone doing something that wreckless and irresponsible/danger to others etc. Really is outragious that he hasn't been charged ...
 

Marco C. (32)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 3:36 pm
More evidence of selective enforcement of law by a renegade, out of control police department out of line with democratic principles of policeing in a democracy. Where is the oversight and review by our other governmental agencies? They have a duty to act, perhaps we need to remind them?
 

Kathy Chadwell (371)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 4:13 pm
Posted to myspace, facebook & twitters
If they do a petition send it to me, I'll happily sign
Not that they listen to us:(
 

William K. (328)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 4:21 pm
World-Wide Condemnation of Police Action Against Occupy Oakland
 

Past Member (0)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 6:06 pm
Much input from each side regarding the sequence of events leading up to the incident.

Let me just say that to openly defy the law and then demand that it work for you as needed just blows my mind .. doesn't work that way.
 

William K. (328)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 7:46 pm
I think that she means that since they are protesting, that the law no longer applies to them, and that it is open season on the protesters. The driver is apparently not responsible for his own actions. When you disagree with someone else's politics, the law does not apply to you, and then you can kill them with impunity. Or perhaps I misunderstood?

Seems to me that the protest is legal. The protesters are exercising their rights, and regardless of what one thinks about the occupy movement, that the driver is responsible for his own actions. He is culpable for having hit the two protesters, and should be held accountable in a court of law.
 

Bianca D. (85)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 9:24 pm
It's one thing for the mainstream media to try to make it look like the OWS mvt is losing steam (yeah, right), but another thing entirely for the authorities to ignore a deliberate act of violence.
 

Kamila A. (141)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 10:19 pm
The beauty of videos is that this guy's face and car and license plate are all known. He will be held accountable.
 

Rebecca Smith (0)
Saturday November 12, 2011, 10:43 pm
I hope this gets the proper attention and justice that it requires. Make this irresponsible and impatient man pay the price of his actions.
 

Lynn Squance (227)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 12:23 am
You do the crime, you do the time. It sounds from the article that the police know what happened from all the witnesses etc. Sounds though like it is becoming a political football going from Bart to Oakland Police to the major crimes unit. Could the time factor be an intimidation tactic? We alreadt know that Oakland Police over reacted earlier and there are political issues of some sort been the mayor and the police.
 

Pat A. (117)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 1:18 am
It is a scandal that this man should not have been prosecuted already - what are they doing over there?!
 

Morris G. (18)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 4:23 am
If you watch the video it is clear the guy in the car had a green light. The intersection was clear and he started across. Then 2 protestor step in front of the car. The car stops. The protestors turn, face the car, start yelling at the driver and beating on his hood. The driver drives into them.
The protestors obviously provoked the incident. The driver perhaps should not have driven into them, but he was caught in a mob situation by that point and likey feared for his life.
As I have said before in many, many places around the country people when confronted with a situation like this in their car will defend them themselves much more aggressively than this driver did. And legally too.
If I try and put myself in this guy's situation in say Charlotte where there have been several car-jacking incidents, where it is legal to carry a gun in your car (and many do including me) and someone starts banging on your hood in the middle of an intersection with other people coming toward you screaming at you. Much worse is likely to happen.
 

Rita White (55)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 7:36 am
Noted,thanks for the article.
 

Diane Stollger (40)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 8:35 am
Unbelievable. I can't imagine a situation where someone is allowed to use their car as a weapon and just drive away as if nothing had happened. It is as if open season has been declared on the protesters.
 

William K. (328)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 8:53 am
Here is a link to a news article that contains a video of the event.

The protesters are already in the intersection before the Mercedes ventures into it. The guy who is in the path of the already advancing Mercedes signals for it to stop. The driver advances, making contact with the protester. The protester bangs on his hood. The driver surges forward. There is an SUV as well who opts to not force his way through the intersection and to let the protesters pass.

This also occurred on the night of the General Strike, which was very well publicized prior to the event and well covered in the media. The driver should not have been surprised that he was caught up in the middle of this protest. If he were the sort of person that was prone to panic, and feared "the mob scene" then what was he doing in downtown Oakland on the night of the general strike. Also, there is no grounds for comparing this to a "car-jacking" given that the publicity surrounding this event.

This was a naked act of aggression. Clearly your sympathies lie with the driver and not with this "mob" of protesters. Do you really condone an act of violence with lethal force against a fellow American exercising their Constitutional rights simply because you do not agree with their politics?
 

Joe R. (189)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 10:23 am
Outrageous!
 

Myriam G. (33)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 7:06 pm
This guy driving the Mercedes must have felt ''entitled'' to act so...
Isn't that type of entitlement one of the very things the Occupy movement is protesting.
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday November 13, 2011, 11:36 pm
Now that's the enemy. Persecute him!
 

Robby K. (59)
Monday November 14, 2011, 1:33 am
Let's see- green light, people from mob step out in front of car, shout, gesture, & pound hood of car... When will they be arrested? I mean, some states say that if you willfully detain someone for even a second, that you are basically kidnapping them. They could also be booked for attempted vandalization & attempted assault. Yes, assault- if a citizen did that to a cop in his car, they could get attempted assault. Acting agressively warrants a response. It might not be the one they wanted, but they got it. They had no right to detain that man & I wonder if they would have, had he been in a broken down Pinto...? Furthermore, had I been the driver, w/that many angry demonstrators around, I might've done the same thing. The DRIVER had the right of way. I'm surprised this isn't happening more often during these demonstrations. I feel they have every right TO demonstrate, but there is a line....

Morris G- you are absolutely right.
 

patricia lasek (317)
Monday November 14, 2011, 8:49 am
How many times have you crossed a street against the light? The pedestrian ALWAYS has the right of way.
 

Robby K. (59)
Monday November 14, 2011, 9:12 am
BS! The driver had the right of way. The pedestrians were not obeying trafic signals. They challenged the driver & got what they deserved. You stand in front of a 4000lb sedan, beat on the hood, try to detain that person against their will for even a SECOND & you deserve to get whatever's coming... The driver tried to slowly push the guy along & the guy would not move. So....the driver moved him. I just don't believe this would have happened if the guy had been driving a beater instead of a Mercedes, nor would people be calling for charges. That's complete BS. The pedestrians wanted friction & they got it. That mob was obviously intimidating. Watch the video...

I'm tired of pedestrians breaking laws & then hiding behind "I have the right of way" when clearly, they do not... They'll step out in front at the very last second & it's supposed to be the drivers fault? I've been on BOTH sides & I'm sick of it. Roads are for cars. Crossing roads is supposed to happen in a legal, orderly, manner, dependent on crosswalks & lights, just like driving on them is supposed to be....
 

Jane H. (128)
Monday November 14, 2011, 1:33 pm
Hope the police really do find him and justice for all is done.
 

William K. (328)
Monday November 14, 2011, 8:56 pm
No one ever has the right to inflict harm on another or damage another's property. I am amazed that someone is actually arguing that the driver had the right to run the protesters down because they had a green light. The pedestrian was already in the lane; regardless of the signals, the pedestrian had the right of way.

However, this is a bogus line of argument, as this is not simply a case of a traffic accident. The driver was at a stop, and deliberately accelerated from stop to hit the guy.
 

Robby K. (59)
Tuesday November 15, 2011, 1:17 am
The pedestrians deliberately stopped, detained this man against his will, & very aggressively pounded on the hood of his car (proving the theory of evolution I might add). They were damaging his property & he had the right to defend it! What did they expect? A cookie? He should've backed up after to see what that bump in the road really was...

In the video I saw, the pedestrians were going against the red light. They held up traffic for several seconds AFTER it had changed & instead of just walking on, they stopped in front of him. I say again, sir, that they caused that situation. Why didn't they stop as were legally obligated? OR just simply continue walking? And to pound on his car?

How long was the driver supposed to just sit there & allow them to hold him up? Anyone who's taken a psychology class understands 'group mentality' & 'diffusion of responsibility.' I firmly believe in right to protest & have no problem w/their "politics" but there's a fine line b/t protesters & rioting mobs & group mentality gets ugly REALLY FAST! If I were that guy, I'd have been worried.

And why was he there? Maybe he had to work. He had as much right to be there as they did. And, he plainly tried to slowly & gently push them along, but NO, they had to be tough guys. I also noticed that many of the people who saw the video sided w/the driver too. They did not have the right of way- they weren't even crossing at that point. They were merely trying to detain & scare him by being aggressive & damaging his property.
 

William K. (328)
Tuesday November 15, 2011, 10:56 pm
The only "ugliness" was instigated by the driver. The intersection was full of already full of marchers, and he tried to force his way through. The protester was in the lane ahead of him, and the protester stopped him to prevent the driver from hitting him and other marchers. Self defense on the part of the protester.

The was never under any threat, and the driver himself was instigating the violence. Your argument still boils down to justifying the drivers act of aggression and violence because he had a green light.
 

Robby K. (59)
Wednesday November 16, 2011, 4:42 am
William- I've watched the vid about 10 more times since my last post & feel more strongly than ever. They weren't crossing. They were walking down the middle of the perpendicular street. They weren't obeying signals- just a fine line b/t protesters & a mob. They went straight through the middle of the intersection. Again, what right did they have to detain him &/or threaten him & pound on his car? They could stop, as they were legally required to do, or, neanderthal their way through & hope to not get hit. They did neither. They started through. He inched forward. They actually stopped, had a verbal altercation, physically pounded on his car, dared him to move, & finally got what they asked for. Like a bully threatening a kid w/a nuckle-SW for his lunch $. Kid hits bully & gets in trouble b/c bully didn't actually hit him!

Again, had he been a cop, they'd have been arrested (& likely tased)! Cocky, aggressive bullies challenged a 4000lb sedan B/C it was a Mercedes. Walking all over the middle of both roads w/out a care for law & order & just wanted to start $hit! That could qualify as assault! Where is the driver's right to defend his property?

I honestly don't mean to argue w/you sir. I've seen many of your posts- some I agree with, some not, but I respect your input. I just greatly disagree here. I'm glad the driver did what he did. Maybe he shouldn't have hit them so hard, but, he may have taught them a lesson. What are the odds they'll try that crap again? They dont own the roads. Tricks are for kids & roads are for cars. Trying to block cars w/your body, daring them to run you over is stupid & you might get your wish!
 

William K. (328)
Saturday November 19, 2011, 4:31 pm
This was a protest march, not a matter of pedestrians crossing the street. The protest was well advertised in advance. He should have patiently waited for the marchers to pass. He charged his car into an intersection full of people (wreckless endangerment), and charged the one protester, stopping within a foot of hitting him. The protester can be seen picking something up from the road; only a few seconds transpire between the time the car enters intersection and nearly hits the protester. The protester has only about a second to react. The protester places his hands on the hood of the car simply by bending over a little (that is how close the car came to him) in a gesture to get the car to stop. He is not banging on the hood at this point. The car lurches forward, making contact with the protester, who staggers back. The protester then bangs on the hood, and the car rams him with force, knocking him to the ground. This all transpires in about 13 seconds.

The driver is clearly aggressing his way through the intersection, using the threat of violence to get people out of his way. This was no accident, whereby the driver runs into someone stepping into the street against the light. The driver had a choice, as did other drivers. He chose to use force against the demonstrators. He is accountable for his actions.

Your arguments about stop lights are irrelevant. That never gave anyone the right to run someone else down deliberately. The protester never represented a threat to the driver; rather, the driver threatened force against him. The claim that the protester was "detaining the driver against his will" is laughable. No threat was ever made against the driver until after he was committing an act of aggression against the protesters.

We can disagree until the cows come home, but the only way to settle this is in a court of law.
 
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