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Inspector General will review LAPD ArtWalk response

Eric Zassenhaus/KPCC

Los Angeles police officers and Occupy LA protesters clashed at July's ArtWalk, leading to 17 arrests and four injuries.

LAPD's oversight agency will review police response to protesters and general crowd control measures used during the July 12 ArtWalk in Downtown Los Angeles. That night ended in what's been widely (and neutrally) described as a "melee" - members of the crowd threw rocks and other items at police, and officers responded with rubber bullets.

The night reportedly went sour when police arrested people who drew with chalk on sidewalks near 5th and Spring Streets. Officers said the chalkers weren't only vandalizing sidewalks,  they were obstructing the sidewalks and forcing ArtWalk patrons into the streets.

At least some of the chalk artists showed up to protest a general police crackdown on sidewalk chalking. Before July 12, police had arrested eight people for chalking at the site of an ongoing anti-gentrification protest outside the offices of the Central City Association. There, police said, protesters were drawing on public and private property, and local business folk had called in to complain.

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