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Yesterday morning, Park Service police entered McPherson Square and began pulling down tents—after making an agreement that tents, sans bedding, could stay up in protest. Lydia DePillis wrote yesterday over at Housing Complex:
Early this morning, the Park Police rolled into McPherson Square, set up barricades, took down the Tent of Dreams, distributed blue flyers describing what they were going to do, and after giving Occupiers about an hour to remove stuff from their tents, started methodically going through the park in yellow jumpsuits to bag and tag what hadn’t been taken. Some headlines call it a raid, but the overall impression is more like a toxic waste dump cleanup, with months of detritus being cleared away.
“All persons not in compliance will be subject to arrest, and property will be collected as evidence,” the notice reads. “Any temporary structure used for camping is subject to seizure as an abatement of a public nuisance.”
The public nuisance language bears out hints dropped by the Department of the Interior at Tuesday’s court hearing: Stuff could actually be taken out for sanitary reasons, even if it wasn’t technically violating the no-camping regulations. By the time they’re done, some of the tents might be left, but with nothing that made them habitable.
As of right now, DCist reports, most tents are gone, though Occupiers pledge to stick around, even if they’re not sleeping in the park.
Photo by thisisbossi via Flickr/Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0 License