'Flood Wall Street,' Massive Sit-In, Planned for September 22

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Image via Facebook
A flyer being circulated for the event.
Happy third birthday, Occupy Wall Street. This time last year, some former Occupiers embarked on a small-scale, nostalgic march through the Financial District -- one that, for a change, ended in zero arrests. But this year, many of their minds are on next week, when a massive civil-disobedience action is planned for the steps of the New York Stock Exchange. "Flood Wall Street" is being billed as a sit-in and blockade to "shut down the institutions that are profiting from the climate crisis." Blue-clad protesters are expected to meet in Battery Park and then descend on the Financial District sometime on September 22; people affiliated with the event have told us to expect mass arrests.

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New York Post Reporter to Occupy Activist Cecily McMillan: "You Look Fabulous! But You Should Eat More."

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via nypost.com
The latest installment of the New York Post's Cecily McMillan fashion watch.
Occupy Wall Street activist and New School graduate student Cecily McMillan was back in Manhattan criminal court Thursday morning, just weeks after her release from Rikers Island, where she served two months after being convicted of assaulting a police officer. The 25-year-old McMillan still faces another criminal charge, this one a misdemeanor, for obstruction of governmental administration. After a brief hearing, McMillan and her attorney, Martin Stolar, left the courthouse trailed by the usual press scrum, who immediately drilled down on the real story: McMillan's physical appearance.


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Cecily McMillan, Fresh out of Rikers Island: "The 99% Is Stronger Than Ever"

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Photo by Anna Merlan
McMillan reads her statement in front of the Rikers entrance.
At 5 o'clock this morning, graduate student and Occupy Wall Street protester Cecily McMillan was awakened by a guard in her bunk at Rikers, where she's spent a little more than two months after being convicted of assault on a police officer. McMillan had expected to be released today, but she anticipated going through the usual procedure: visiting the social services office around 7:30 a.m. with a group of other women also being let out that day, receiving her property back, and meeting her friends at the gates of the jail.

Instead, McMillan says she was taken to an unmarked van by a cadre of police officers.

"I don't want to go with you," she later told her friend Lucy Parks she said to them. "You're not telling me where you're taking me." She feared she was being set up.

Eventually, an officer told her she was being released. She was taken to the Queensboro Plaza, where she says she was "dumped" unceremoniously, her arms full of her property. She had no keys, money, or phone. The officers left her with a Metro Card and drove away.

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Occupy Protester Cecily McMillan on Rikers: "In Some Ways, I'm Treated Better Than Anyone Else In Here, Which is Horrifying"

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Photo by Anna Merlan
McMillan with her lead attorney, Martin Stolar, during her trial.
After serving a little less than two months in jail, Occupy Wall Street protester and graduate student Cecily McMillan will be released from Rikers Island on Wednesday, July 2. As you might recall, the 25-year-old was found guilty in May of assaulting a police officer during a 2012 protest. She was sentenced to 90 days in jail and five years probation, with time off for the good behavior and time served. It seems safe to say that both McMillan and the city's Department of Correction will be happy to see her off the island, where, true to form, she's been protesting and organizing almost since the moment she arrived.

Rikers has been in an uproar lately, after two officers and 20 inmates were arrested as part of a corruption sweep. But none of them were in the Rose M. Singer Center, the jail unit where women are kept. McMillan and her fellow inmates didn't know about the arrests until relatively recently. The regular paper for the inmates is the Daily News; when they ran a cover story about the arrests last week, the paper arrived with the front cover torn off.

In a recent phone call, McMillan said her time at Rikers has been curious, a mix of special treatment that no other inmates receive and weird restrictions that seem tailor-made just for her.

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Nine of 12 Jurors Who Convicted Occupy Protestor Cecily McMillian Ask Judge to Go Easy on Her

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Photo by C.S. Muncy
McMillan's supporters hold up signs in her honor at Liberty Plaza after her conviction.
On Monday, Occupy Wall Street protester and New School graduate student Cecily McMillan was convicted of assaulting police officer Grantley Bovell during a demonstration on March 17, 2012, a felony that carries a maximum of seven years in prison. There's been widespread shock and outrage over that verdict, and the lengthy prison time McMillan could do, particularly in light of the fact that she maintains that the incident began when Bovell grabbed her breast from behind, causing her to involuntarily elbow him in the face.

Apparently, the jury in the McMillan case is just as shocked as everyone else. In a letter dated May 6, nine of them wrote to Judge Ronald Zweibel, the judge who heard the case and will sentence McMillan on May 19, asking him to be lenient. The letter reads, in part: "It serves no purpose to Cecily or to society to incarcerate her for any amount of time."

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Occupy Champion Melissa Mark-Viverito Sported $5,300 Rings to the $25,000 per Ticket Met Gala


Melissa Mark-Viverito at the Met gala Monday night.

Remember November 2011, when City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito was arrested, along with 98 protestors, for blocking the Brooklyn Bridge while chanting "We are the 99 percent?"

Well, times have changed. On Monday -- the same day protestors were gathering in Zuccotti Park to rail against the assault conviction of Occupy protester Cecily McMillan -- Mark-Viverito was uptown at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, rubbing elbows with the .001%, at the Met Institute Costume gala.


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Cecily McMillan Supporters Rally and Grieve Following Guilty Verdict

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Photo by C.S. Muncy
McMillan's supporters held up signs in her honor at Liberty Plaza last night.
Yesterday, a jury found graduate student and Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan guilty of assault on a police officer. As we wrote, the scene in the courthouse at 100 Centre Street quickly grew chaotic, with her supporters shouting about the injustice of the verdict and court security officers with plastic handcuffs shouting back.

Last night, McMillan's supporters gathered for a quieter rally at Liberty Plaza, formerly known as Zuccotti Park, once the scene of the OWS encampment.

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Occupy Wall Street Activist Cecily McMillan Found Guilty of Assault on Police Officer

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McMillan talks with one of her lawyers, Martin Stolar.

Update, 3:08 p.m.:
A jury has found Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan guilty of assault on a police officer. Her sentencing will be May 19. She was remanded into custody, pending sentencing. Judge Ronald Zweibel refused to let her stay free on bail. A full update can be found on page three.

The Voice's Anna Merlan posted this photo of the police presence:

Original story below.

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As Trial Winds Down, Prosecutors Press OWS Activist Cecily McMillan On Unrelated Misdemeanor Arrest

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Image via Facebook
Cecily McMillan
After three weeks, the trial of Occupy Wall Street activist Cecily McMillan is nearly over, with McMillan herself taking the stand yesterday, April 29. Her testimony touched briefly on her educational background and her activism. On Wednesday, she's expected to discuss her version of what happened on March 17, 2012, when she's accused of assaulting a police officer, Grantley Bovell, during a demonstration at Zuccotti Park.

As the trial continues, two different versions of McMillan have emerged. Defense testimony depicts McMillan as a gentle, intelligent, non-violent activist who believed in working with the police and the government to make change. They say she elbowed Bovell after he grabbed her breast from behind, and that she didn't realize it was a police officer doing the grabbing. During the incident, they say, McMillan was thrown to the ground and beaten by Bovell and other officers, triggering a seizure. When a friend visited her in the hospital while she was in custody, she told him she feared her ribs were broken.

The prosecution, meanwhile, maintains that the 25-year-old McMillan is a committed cop-hater who makes a habit of fighting with the police, and that she faked her seizure in an attempt to get out of trouble. They've been trying hard to find a way to mention a second pending case against her, a misdemeanor in which she's charged with interfering with the arrest of a man and a woman who were being cited for fare evasion in the Union Square subway station. Yesterday, they succeeded.

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City Will Pay $55,000 To Settle Case of Occupy Livestreamer Josh Boss, Tackled By High-Ranking NYPD Chief

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Image via.
A video still of Boss's arrest
Occupy Wall Street is still proving expensive for the city of New York, who keep having pay out large sums of money to Occupy protesters who were over-enthusiastically arrested by the NYPD. In April 2013, the city paid $365,000 to settle claims over the destruction of the OWS library, and civil rights attorney Wylie Stecklow of Stecklow Cohen & Thompson says he's settled six or seven other Occupiers' claims for unlawful arrests. The latest came just yesterday, when the city agreed to pay $55,000 in the case of Josh Boss, who was livestreaming a December 2011 march when he was thrown to the ground and kneed by Chief Thomas Purtell, then the commanding officer of the Manhattan South Patrol Division, which oversees all marches and protests in the city.

"Purtell is the most senior officer we've ever seen in a physical unlawful arrest," Stecklow tells the Voice. "He got hands on."

Boss was filming the march on the evening of December 17, 2011. As the marchers crossed the street, so did he, camera in hand. Footage of the incident shows that he was in a crosswalk when Purtell came running at him, flung him to the ground, and put his knee on Boss's chest. "Kick his ass, Tom!" another officer can be heard saying in the background.

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