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Olympia Copwatching at the Olympia Really Really Free Market today!

Planning meeting today for ramping up copwatch activities in Olympia. Interested folks will be at Bigelow Park around noon enjoying the park and sitting in on the Olympia Really Really Free Market. I think we will have a training opportunity. Will also have some flip video camcorders to get out into the hands of folks who are committed to keeping a camera turned on the police in Olympia. I am not sure we need a formal organization to ramp up copwatch, mainly I just think we more tools and a little bit of framework.

I have opened an Olympia Copwatch facebook page and group. I am not sure whether group or page makes more sense. I am still trying to figure out how to use fb. (and I am wondering if google plus will turn out to be a better tool in the long run)

See you in the streets and the parks!

Mike

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2 Replies to “Olympia Copwatching at the Olympia Really Really Free Market today!

  1. yes, there is a gentrification push going on in Olympia. Several political activists have been the target of questionable prosecutions. We have a sit/lie ordinance, an ordinance outlawing busking outside of very limited busking zones, a recent panhandling ban within a certain distance of the recently added parking ticket atms. The poor who are downtown are being identified as “single-use” visitors – folks who only come downtown to access social services or panhandle – by a local downtown business assoc that has a pretty aggressive attitude toward the homeless.

    relationships between police and the activist community have been strained by the aggressive use of pepper spray and batons against non-violent port protesters. Female activists have been subjected to strip searches at the jail – one such ended with a settlement paid out to the victim of the search.

    The most recent episodes are the arrest of local activist Scott Yoos. Scott is mute from a head injury many years ago. He got tossed on the pavement by four oly pd officers in May and is being prosecuted for assault and more. Scott is small stature, non-violent with great wit and insight if you don’t take away his pen and paper and take the time to read what he writes (because he can’t speak).

    The activist community is doing fundraising for legal defense fund for activists. The copwatch push is other side of the coin. Copwatch Oly has languished a bit for many reasons. We are looking at ways to ramp it up with ubiquitous technology of camera phones, camcorders, and facebook.

    Criminalizing homeless folks is not the solution to the mortgage crisis and economic downturn.

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