November 15th, 2011
10:20 AM ET

Judge orders New York to allow protesters, tents, in park

[Updated at 10:20 p.m. ET] A New York judge issued an order Tuesday morning allowing Occupy Wall Street protesters to return to Zuccotti Park, just hours after scores of police in riot gear ordered them out and tore down their tents.

The order from New York Supreme Court Judge Lucy Billings allows protesters to bring tents and other equipment back into the privately-owned park where the now-global Occupy movement began.

City officials had intended to allow protests to resume at the park, but said they would not allow demonstrators to set up tents or camp. The park will remain closed until officials sort out the legal situation, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

"We have an obligation to enforce the laws today, to make sure that everybody has access to the park so everybody can protest. That's the First Amendment and it's number one on our minds," he said. "We also have a similar, just as important obligation to protect the health and safety of the people in the park."

A hearing was scheduled for 11:30 a.m. ET to discuss the order.

[Posted at 4:37 a.m. ET] Police in full riot gear moved in to New York's Zuccotti Park early Tuesday morning, threatening to arrest anyone who didn't evict the site that protesters have occupied for almost two months.

Dozens of protesters linked arms, defying the police and chanting "Whose park? Our park" and "You don't have to do this."

Police arrested at least 14 people, said Kanene Holder, a spokeswoman for the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The New York Police Department would not comment on what prompted the eviction. But Mayor Michael Bloomberg's office said the move is temporary.

"Occupants of Zuccotti should temporarily leave and remove tents and tarps. Protestors can return after the Park is cleared," the mayor's office said in a tweet at 1:34 a.m.

About 10 minutes later, the eviction had begun.

The group's website video streamed the eviction under a banner headline that read, "NYPD is raiding Liberty Square." Liberty Square is the former name of the park.

While many protesters left without resisting, many others moved to the center of the park to an area known as the kitchen. There, they built barricades with tables to keep police away.

The air was thick with smoke, which some protesters said was from teargas that officers lobbed.

Others said officers took thousands of books from the camp's makeshift library and tossed them in Dumpsters.

"In an immense show of force, police have shown their presence," Holder said. "I've seen how agitated the police are, and some pushing and shoving to remove us."

CNN could not immediately confirm those accounts, as police kept journalists a block and a half away from the park during their ra

soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ tangible evidence:
    Sorry–you made the caps first.

    November 15, 2011 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  2. gung hoe

    @ banasy sorry bout that one luv.THAT WAS A TROLL NOT ME .Although I do agree with most of what OWS does stand for thats not me on that post

    November 15, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  3. George Patton

    These protests really need to take place in Washington D.C. since that's where all of our problems originate. We need to rid ourselves of a Congress along with a President both bought and paid for by special interests. That's the reason that this country's involved in all these useless wars overseas and the vastly excessive and unnecessary military spending at the Pentagon!!!

    November 15, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |

    s kel...can't spell. P.S. I'm an independent. s kel Your arguments lack substance and don't even have a noticable cohesive lingual direction. S Kel says "s kel
    November 15th, 2011 7:56 am ET
    the business they (the occupiers) are protesting are for profit only. They (corperations) will outsourse a job for less paid workers in a min. They dont care about workers in America, the United States or anyone not wealthy. Thats what the occupiers want,at least thats the real purpose of it…". What do the occupiers want???? Say it clearly.

    November 15, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Perdition

    This just in, what the OWS movement wants has been recounted again and again. Reiterating them one more time will not cause you to think any differently; it will just cause you to change your wording on your next negative post. Don't pretend to be curious as to what OWS wants; you already know, you are just against it. Whatever. your opinion isn't going to make or break OWS one way or another; just be honest enough with yourself to blast it instead of making the actual believers of OWS keep repeating what you already know, so you can pat yourself on the back whilst calling us more names.

    November 15, 2011 at 11:20 pm | Report abuse |

    Successful arguments are for and in the direction of a cause/solution…not just against something. Most people will see those who are only against something and have no soution as whiners. The OWS mission (abv) is to gather and express mutual feelings of injustice and resentment toward corporations and capitalism. So, what outcome does OwS want and how will they accompish it? Is the protest to affect the social conscience of American businesses to be more ethical? How long will that take? What’s the gameplan???

    November 15, 2011 at 11:53 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Warrant

    Hey Occupiers, if you don't have a job, then your 8-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week job is to go find a job. Not sit around whining about not having a job.

    In the meantime, why not break out into a flash mob for Party Rock Anthem?

    November 30, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
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