We had a server outage, and we're rebuilding the site. Most of the site features won't work. Thank you for your patience.
imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Critical Mass Bicyclists Setup and Arrested

by A Pennsylvania Farmer Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2000 at 6:34 PM

Tuesday, 15 August 2000 - Los Angeles – At 6:20 P.M., PST, Police entrapped and arrested about 40 Critical Mass bicyclists near the convention center. Critical Mass is an event repeated across the world in which bikers get together and bike around a city in support of bike friendly policies.

errorCritical Mass Bicyclists Setup and Arrested

Tuesday, 15 August 2000

Los Angeles At 6:20 P.M., PST, Police entrapped and arrested about 40 Critical Mass bicyclists near the convention center. Critical Mass is an event repeated across the world in which bikers get together and bike around a city in support of bike friendly policies.
Police forced the bikers to head North on 18th Street against the one-way sign. There was very little traffic on the street. The police had diagonally barricaded the intersection at 18th and Washington forcing bikers to head North on 18th Street. At the intersection of Flower and 18th, some of the group tried to get on a sidewalk but bike police surrounded them. The police corralled the bikers beneath the I-10 Freeway. This was very convenient for the police because there were no East or West avenues of dispersal due to large chain link fences on both sides. The police completely barricaded the northern and southern ends of the street.
This was an ideal place to barricade people and arrest them there were no buildings around and almost no bypassers. A few bikers managed to head South through a gate in the chain link fence but a brigade of 40 riot cops in formation confronted them 40 yards away and forced them back to 18th street. The riot cops did not just appear out of nowhere they were obviously placed strategically to seal off this avenue of dispersal.

After police completely surrounded the people, cops in tactical blue uniforms threw them up against a chain link fence and starting throwing the bikes into the roadway. The cops gave the bikers no opportunities to disperse. The cops did not begin any dialogue in order to reach any level of understanding. Cops with batons told them to get their hands on their heads.

About a dozen press and bystanders gathered on the corner coming from the Independent Media Center one block away. Two cops, Officer Sandwell and Officer Wilcox charged at the press and bystanders with batons out. Sandwell threatened one man standing on the sidewalk, You want to be a part of this? Sandwell was implying that if the man did not obey his order to get back then Sandwell would arrest the man for whatever charge Sandwell found appropriate. Sandwell pushed several people with the butt of his baton. One officer yelled, Put the camera down. Some citizens tried to talk to the cops and ask why they were being pushed back. The cops were surprised by this and seemed dumbfounded when anyone questioned their authority. In any event, the crowd of citizens had grown to about two dozen and they remained on the sidewalk forced to be about 40 yards from the prisoners.

Police tactical teams came pouring into the area bringing total police numbers close to one hundred. Four shotgunners and six cops with tear gas guns stood with their hands close to their triggers ready to fire into the small quiet crowd. At one point a woman asked, What are they being arrested with? The ranks of police in dark uniforms just stared at the crowd. One cop in a black uniform videotaped the crowd in an obvious attempt to get photos of everyone in the area.

Police CHIP (California Highway Patrol) units started arriving and binding the bikers with plastic handcuffs. One riot cop told the citizen crowd to head south to the other side of the street. A line of riot cops began moving down the street to enforce this order. Suddenly, six CHIP cops rushed the crowd to grab a bicyclist that had not been surrounded by the other cops and had been talking to the press about what had happened. The woman did not resist and the cops took her away.

Some citizens sang songs about freedom and liberty (My country tis of thee and This land is your land while others chanted briefly (Shame!, This is a police state!, Whose streets? Our streets!).
One cop with a shotgun made a man standing on the corner with a scarf over his face. By this, I mean that the cop selected the man with the scarf, tracked him, told other cops about him, and perceived him as a threat to be neutralized. Quickly, a squad of 12 riot cops formed into a two by six formation and prepared to bum-rush the citizens to grab this man standing on the corner with a scarf on his face. A citizen alerted this man to what was about to happen and told him to split. He began to walk west on Flower Street towards Figouera Street. The police tactical commander moved up the street and followed the man with the scarf to the edge of the police ranks. The tactical squad waited to be given the order to run at the citizens and grab the man with the scarf. Eventually, the man with the scarf was too far from the edge of the police line for them to attack him in strength.

Then, the same cop with the shotgun made two other men with blue bandanas on their face half way up the block and the tactical team prepared to attack these two men. Again, a citizen told them what was going to happen and they beat it down the street.

By the time this reporter left the scene, it was not clear what the cops were going to do with the bikers that they had setup and taken into custody ostensibly for the safety of the citizenry of Los Angeles.

Report this post as:
Share on: Twitter, Facebook, Google+

add your comments

Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 4 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
tremendous reporting... Law-Abiding Cop Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2000 at 6:42 PM
Concerned Jim Davis Thursday, Aug. 17, 2000 at 6:25 AM
no motorists anonymous Thursday, Aug. 17, 2000 at 8:38 PM
The aggravation is due to motorists not bikes Landis Duffett Thursday, Aug. 17, 2000 at 9:05 PM
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy