300 Arrested in Occupy Oakland Chaos

Protesters break into City Hall, vandalize, throw objects at police
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 29, 2012 6:05 AM CST
300 Arrested in Occupy Oakland Chaos
A protester writes "revolt" on a Wells Fargo Bank sign during an anti-police protest by Occupy Oakland, last night in Oakland, Calif.   (AP Photo/Beck Diefenbach)

Occupy Oakland yesterday had its stormiest protests since November, with about 300 people were arrested in a chaotic day, reports the AP. About 2,000 demonstrators gathered at one point, clashing with police throughout the day. Some protesters hurled rocks, bottles, and other objects, while City Hall was broken into and an American flag was burned. Police responded with tear gas and flash grenades, in addition to the arrests.

Protesters marched on an empty convention center in the afternoon—intending to take it over, according to police. Along the way, some demonstrators tore down perimeter fencing, destroyed construction equipment, and threw objects at police. The police were able to break up the group by 4pm, but many then headed downtown, breaking into a YMCA building and City Hall, which is when most of the arrests occurred. City Mayor Jean Quan called on the Occupiers to "stop using Oakland as its playground." (Read more Occupy Oakland stories.)

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