Was this reported anywhere outside LA?



BREAKING: Police Fire Rubber Bullets, Tear Gas into Crowd at Los Angeles Immigration Rally
LAPD Chief Claims ‘Elements of the Crowd’ Threw Projectiles at Police in Riot Gear, News Reports Say the Rally Had Been Peaceful
National Coordinators Call for Independent Investigation, Further Information from Those at McArthur Park Rally…
Officers in riot gear from the Los Angeles Police Department fired rubber bullets and used tear gas to disperse a “crowd of hundreds” gathered at a local park for a previously peaceful May Day immigration rally.
National rally coordinators are protesting the action and have sent us a statement via email asking citizens to call on LAPD Chief William Bratton and LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to demand an independent investigation into the “May Day incident at McArthur Park”. They are also seeking information from anyone in the crowd at McArthur Park in Los Angeles during the incident. The statement, sent from Lee Sui Hin, National Coordinator from the National Immigrant Solidarity Network/Action LA Coalition, is posted in full at the end of this article.
NBC 4 is reporting that Bratton is claiming “15 officers were hit by missiles that were thrown at them by ‘certain elements of the crowd … who we don’t believe were representative’ of most of those who were there…While he spoke, a person could be heard declaring, ‘That’s not true.'”
He’s promised an investigation, though the rally coordinators are demanding tonight that an independent commission be appointed to look into the matter.
AFP reports that some 200,000 rallied nationwide today. Here’s what UPI is reporting tonight on the LA incident:

L.A. police move on immigration rally

LOS ANGELES, May 1 (UPI) — A day of peaceful immigration rallies in major U.S. cities Tuesday was marred when Los Angeles police fired rubber bullets to disperse the crowd.

Witnesses said police wearing riot gear and wielding batons gave no warning before firing at rally participants gathered at MacArthur Park, CNN reported. Police said a protester knocked down a motorcycle officer, the news channel said.

There were no reports of serious injuries and no arrests were made.

Several people, including 15 police officers, were hurt. About 10 people were taken by ambulance to hospitals for treatment, said d’Lisa Davies, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles city Fire Department.

Late Tuesday, a staff member from Telemundo’s newsroom confirmed that one reporter and three camera operators from the Spanish-language TV station had been injured and had been taken to a hospital by police.

Another TV station, Fox 11, showed video on its 10 p.m. newscast of a station camerawoman apparently being struck by a baton-wielding police officer in riot gear.

The complete statement from the National Immigrant Solidarity Network follows below…

National Immigrant Solidarity Network, ActionLA Coalition
Statement on LAPD Brutally Attacks May Day Immigrant Marchers at McArthur Park

May 1, 2007 10:00 PM PST

National Immigrant Solidarity Network and Action LA is outraged to learn that at about 6:30 PM, May 1, the LAPD fired rubber bullets and tear gas into crowds of hundreds of people at the May Day rally in McArthur Park. This was after the police had declared an unlawful assembly. Most of the people present did not hear or know about the police declaration..

The LAPD failed to act professionally and demonstrate restraint when it used excess force against a peaceful rally of families which included mothers, babies and young children. The LAPD lacked recognition of the consequences of it’s actions.

Shame on the LAPD for failing to careful think before using brutal force to attack peaceful marchers.

We are calling community members, civil leaders to Immediately call LAPD chief William Bratton, and LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa office, to demand the following:

1) An immediate independent police investigation of the May Day incident at McArthur Park, and demand officers who violated the police guidelines be punished.

2) The immediate and full disclosure from LAPD of any people arrested and detained, we further demand that the LAPD not act as immigrant agents to enforce Federal immigrant law. Due-process of any detainees must be respected.

We encourage anyone if you have information about the May Day McArthur Park incident, please contact us: (213) 403-0131 or e-mail: info@immigrantsolidarity.org

We’ll issue another detail statement soon and your support is highly appreciated.

Lee Siu Hin
National Coordinator
National Immigrant Solidarity Network
ActionLA Coali

tion

LAPD Hotline:
Toll Free (1-877-275-5273)
Spanish Line (Español)
213-928-8222

LA Mayor’s Office:
213/978-0600

National Immigrant Solidarity Network
No Immigrant Bashing! Support Immigrant Rights!

webpage:
http://www.ImmigrantSolidarity.org
e-mail:
info@ImmigrantSolidarity.org
New York: (212) 330-8172
Los Angeles: (213) 403-0131
Washington D.C.: (202) 595-8990

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