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Occupy Santa Cruz Stands Firm In Vacant Bank Building

SANTA CRUZ (KCBS) – Santa Cruz police tried unsuccessfully overnight to remove a group of Occupy demonstrators who barricaded themselves inside a vacant bank building on Wednesday.

The protesters have vowed to remain in the former Coast Commercial Bank building across the river from the Occupy Santa Cruz encampment, saying they need it as a shelter for the winter.

KCBS’ Matt Bigler Reports:

“Not only do we have electricity and running water, and heat for that matter, but it’s a place to sleep where there’s less chance we can get sick,” said a spokeswoman for the group who identified herself as Desiree.

A lone demonstrator kept watch from the building’s roof above a misspelled banner that reads “Oocupy Everything” as Desiree climbed over a pile of desks and chairs for the interview.

The word “Occupied” was scrawled across the red “available” on the real estate agent’s sign out front, and the bank’s windows were covered with butcher paper.

The group took over the building after a rally outside a nearby Chase Bank to protest predatory lending protesters said led to the foreclosure crisis.

Police confronted by a wall of protesters opted for safety reasons not to remove the demonstrators for trespassing as the owner of the vacant building requested, said Officer Zach Friend, spokesman for the Santa Cruz Police Department.

Friend said no other demonstrators would be allowed inside while police tried to negotiate a peaceful end.

“We’ll try an open dialogue. If that doesn’t work, at some point we’re unfortunately going to have to go to the next stage,” he said, adding police have avoided confrontations with the Occupy encampment for nearly 6 weeks.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

More from Matt Bigler
  • WASPy

    Hopefully, the bank building will remain an envampment for criminal squatters and potential entrepreneurs seeing this will decide to locate their businesses somewhere other than Santa Cruz, or Caleefornia for that matter.

    Miracle your jobs, hippies.

    • Bill

      Don’t waste your time. It’s too late… :-)’s

      Have a goood one, On me!

      Oh, And any attempt to respond in your pathetically corrupt manner is an admission to your corruptness and motivations.

      Might as well catch the train cause your gonna be left behind… But that’s your concern isn’t it.

  • Bill

    Very Fitting. These protesters deserve to be treated as heroes. They are fighting for the rights of what’s left of the constitution. The guilty Bankers need to GO TO JAIL for far more time than the “common Criminal”. They are repeating offenders raping this great nations wealth and peoples lives.

  • ally

    The DEA have been stealing drugs from evidence lockup and reselling them. It has become a popular way in the Department of Justice’s DEA to make extra money.
    They also steal from suspects for which they have created fabricated or coerced heresay evidence.
    With some of the DEA suffering under mountains of credit card debt they have started to think outside the box.

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