Crime & Justice

Ferguson protests: Arrested protesters to be released in time for Thanksgiving dinner (updated)

Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Damian Dovarganes/AP
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Ferguson protesters in downtown LA.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Ferguson protesters in downtown LA.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
California Highway Patrol officers guard a freeway ramp as demonstrators rally in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Missouri, grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Damian Dovarganes/AP
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD officers patrolling on Spring Street Downtown.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD officers patrolling on Spring Street Downtown.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD Captain Jeffrey Bert speaking to protesters.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Protesters in front of LAPD headquarters.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
Protesters in front of LAPD headquarters.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD officers on the steps of LA City Hall.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD officers in riot gear at Hope and 6th streets.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LA Sheriff's Department bus at site of arrests Wednesday, November 26.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD officers in riot gear at site of mass arrests.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC
Protesters kneel down with their hands up in front of Los Angeles police officers in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. People protesting the Ferguson, Mo., grand jury decision took to the streets in cities across the U.S. for a third day Wednesday.
LAPD bus hauling protesters away.
Miguel Contreras/KPCC


Update 12:25 p.m.: LAPD says protesters will be released in time for Thanksgiving dinner

The Los Angeles Police Department says demonstrators who can't make bail after being arrested during Ferguson protests will be released in time for Thanksgiving dinner.

Commander Andrew Smith says Thursday that about 90 people are still jailed and will be released on their own recognizance without having to post $500 bail.

Because of the holiday, many of those arrested would have otherwise remained jailed until Monday, when courts reopen.

Smith says 338 people have been arrested in the past three days for failure to disperse and disrupting the peace.

Of those, 145 were arrested late Wednesday.

Thirty-five people were also arrested in Oakland following a march that deteriorated into vandalism.

— Associated Press

Earlier:

At least 130 demonstrators who refused to disperse during a Los Angeles protest were arrested Wednesday night, while 35 people were detained in Oakland following a march that deteriorated into unrest and vandalism, according to police officials.

AP reports that about 200 or 300 largely peaceful demonstrators crisscrossed the streets of downtown Los Angeles for several hours in the afternoon and evening over a decision not to bring criminal charges against Officer Darren Wilson in the Aug. 9 fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

Later some of the protesters were stopped by a phalanx of riot-clad police near the Central Library.

Lt. Andy Neiman said an unlawful assembly was declared after some marchers began walking in the street and disrupting traffic. They were ordered to disperse but instead reformed, with police trying to corral them.

Neiman said 130 protesters were arrested.

LAPD officers cut off access to Sixth Street near Hope, where the protesters were loaded onto several LAPD buses and hauled away for booking. Shortly thereafter, the street was reopened and a second group of about 50 protesters formed at the corner of 7th Street and Hope.

The group marched through the streets of downtown L.A. past midnight with LAPD officers on bicycles and patrol vehicles in tow. They made a brief stop near City Hall before settling in front of LAPD headquarters, where protesters took turns at a blowhorn to address a line of LAPD officers behind barricades.

The mostly peaceful crowd dispersed at about 1 a.m. Thursday morning. No further arrests were made at that time.

 

Oakland police spokeswoman Johnna Watson said the arrests there came after a march by about 100 people through Oakland streets.

She said that later small groups began moving through the streets with some vandalizing property, mainly breaking windows.

On Monday and Tuesday, some demonstrators in Oakland vandalized businesses and blocked freeways.

During the demonstration Wednesday in Los Angeles, demonstrators had marched to a federal building and police headquarters but they were turned away by lines of police after heading toward the county jail and then the Staples Center arena, where the Los Angeles Lakers were playing.

"The system is wrong," demonstrator Jovan Brown told KCAL-TV. "We're trying to let everybody know if we come together as a people and unite, we can change it."

There was a brief, tense confrontation where a handful of demonstrators screamed at officers, who held raised batons. One officer struck a woman who had moved forward, and another shoved a protester.

Finally, squads of police boxed in and began arresting around 60 remaining protesters for failure to disperse, Neiman said.

Most of those arrested were expected to be released after posting $500 bail for the misdemeanor. However, those unable to pay the bail could remain jailed through the Thanksgiving weekend pending scheduled Monday court hearings, authorities said.

"Well Thanksgiving is tomorrow, so it is possible. That's not our goal... they had multiple opportunities to disperse, multiple opportunities to comply with the lawful orders of police. This was not our choice," Chief Charlie Beck told NBC LA.

Earlier Wednesday, nine people were arrested after they sat down in a bus lane on U.S. 101 near downtown during one of the busiest driving days of the year.

There were smaller, peaceful protests in other communities, including San Diego and Riverside.

More than 300 protesters have been arrested over the past three days by Los Angeles police and California Highway Patrol officers.