US Indymedia Global Indymedia Publish About us
Printed from Boston IMC : http://boston.indymedia.org/
Boston.Indymedia
IVAW Winter Soldier

Winter Soldier
Testimonies
Brad Presente

Other Local News

Spare Change News
Open Media Boston
Somerville Voices
Cradle of Liberty
The Sword and Shield

Local Radio Shows

WMBR 88.1 FM
What's Left
WEDS at 8:00 pm
Local Edition
FRI (alt) at 5:30 pm

WMFO 91.5 FM
Socialist Alternative
SUN 11:00 am

WZBC 90.3 FM
Sounds of Dissent
SAT at 11:00 am
Truth and Justice Radio
SUN at 6:00 am

Create account Log in
Comment on this feature | View comments | Email this feature | Printer-friendly version
News :: DNC : Human Rights
Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
09 Jul 2004
exclaim.jpg
** Emergency Release From Boston ** Please Forward Everywhere.

Despite the Boston Police Department’s stated commitment to protect people’s First Amendment rights during the DNC, the BPD has, in conjunction with other law enforcement officers in New York City, started a campaign of preemptive action that could chill protest participants' lawful speech activities during the Democratic National Convention (DNC).
** Emergency Release From Boston ** Please Forward Everywhere.

Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates Written by Boston ABC

Despite the Boston Police Department’s stated commitment to protect people’s First Amendment rights during the DNC, the BPD has, in conjunction with other law enforcement officers in New York City, started a campaign of preemptive action that could chill protest participants' lawful speech activities during the Democratic National Convention (DNC).

The NYPD/FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force started an intimidation campaign against New York activists to prevent them from speaking out against the DNC. On Thursday, July 8, two officers visited the home of a New York City activist (referred to as “Tim” hereafter). They said that they acquired his name from the Boston Police Department, which has compiled a list of “troublemakers” who are coming to Boston. The officers said they plan to visit the homes of all so-called “troublemakers.”

At 7 p.m. the officers arrived at Tim’s parents’ house, where Tim resides during the summer. Tim was not home, but his parents talked to the officers. The officers had already done extensive surveillance on Tim, which included examining his medical and academic records, in addition to Tim’s previous history with the police. The officers said they are expecting a large band of organized anarchists to come to Boston and destroy it, and proceeded to tell Tim’s father that it was inadvisable for Tim to:

- engage in political activity in Boston
- work with a named, “known anarchist organizer” in Boston,
- work with the Bl(A)ck Tea Society (The BTS is a non-violent group that has been organizing for the DNC for the past year. Planned events include those of protest and celebration, including a free outdoor festival with music, games and entertainment. For more information about the Bl(A)ck Tea Society, go to www.blackteasociety.org.),
- come to Boston to observe the DNC or get arrested during the DNC.

One of the officers left his business card:

Richard W. Ockovic NYPD/FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force 26 Federal Plaza New York, NY 646-696-2113 646-773-8116 (cell)

This type of intimidation and targeting of activists is illegal, unacceptable, and unfounded. Local organizers have seen a surge in efforts by police to create fear in the public and in organizers, demonizing political activists, creating an us-them dynamic and preemptively harassing activists so as to have a chilling effect on First Amendment rights. Both the Boston ABC and the National Lawyers Guild are appalled by the Boston Police Department’s lack of commitment to its claims of protecting free speech.

People who are visited by law enforcement officers are advised to take down the officers’ names and badge numbers and otherwise not talk to them or let them in your homes – tell them they can contact your attorney (you do not have to give them the name of your attorney). Contact the National Lawyers Guild in Boston if you are visited by officers or if you have questions regarding your rights (NLG Boston office: 617-227-7335 or nlgmass@igc.org). Please also contact the Boston Anarchist Black Cross, which is doing support work for protesters during the DNC.

About the Boston Anarchist Black Cross (ABC): The Boston Anarchist Black Cross is a prison abolition/prisoner support group affiliated with the Anarchist Black Cross Network (www.anarchistblackcross.org). We support those on the inside as well as working on issues of community defense. Boston ABC is helping support protesters arrested during the DNC. For more information, go to http://www.baamboston.org/abc/ or contact ABCboston-DNC04@baamboston.org.

See also:
http://blackteasociety.org/
http://baamboston.org/

This work is in the public domain.
Add a quick comment
Title
Your name Your email

Comment

Text Format
Anti-spam Enter the following number into the box:
To add more detailed comments, or to upload files, see the full comment form.

Comments

Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
09 Jul 2004
Thanks for this timely press release about major bullshit. I know that Fridays are often bad days to get coverage, so if it doesn't get picked up by media outlets, you may want to re-release it Monday morning.

While it certainly doesn't go as far as it should, I hope that folks will support the new Boston City Council resolution against police harassment and repression around the DNC. Sponsored by City Councilor Felix Arroyo, the resolution will be voted on this Wednesday, July 14. If it passes, it will help to shine a spotlight on security during the convention and make it a bit harder for this kind of bullshit to happen.

You can sign a petition in support of hte resolution at http://www.saveourcivilliberties.org/petition and most importantly, if youlive in Boston, call you City Councilors and tell them to back it! Contact info is at http://www.cityofboston.gov/citycouncil/default.asp with contact info for each Councilor along the right-hand side of the page.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
09 Jul 2004
A possible idea for people who believe they are next on the list for this harrasment would be to have a tape recorder or video camera on hand, if something like this could be got on tape discreetly, releasing it to the media and the public would be a very wise move.
good luck!
Legal Note
09 Jul 2004
Legal Note: It is illegal to record someone on audio without their consent. People have been charged with felonies for recording cops with what the court claimed was a "hidden" microphone.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
10 Jul 2004
what if there was a sign posted clearly on the door, saying something like private property under surveilance? Either way, it may not have the same effect but in order to avoid being harrassed illegally you could just state that you are going to record the conversation, no?
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
10 Jul 2004
the best thing to just not talk to them.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
10 Jul 2004
These sort of house visits are what happened
in the run-up to the WEF meeting in Poland. See the main report here:

Police against activists http://pl.indymedia.org/pl/2004/04/5135.shtml#english

and the cops even carried out a silly Hollywood style raid (which hopefully will fireback at them with a good lawsuit)

Police raid house of Warsaw anti-repression activist
http://pl.indymedia.org/pl/2004/04/5379.shtml

Situation was similar in Ireland too at same time.

The chances of a large number of house visits
are probably high, so it's worth sorting out some
viable strategy, e.g. why not try to have many
activists prepared with video cameras, and
*overtly* film any cops coming to visit - of course
refuse to talk, but even filming this much
is useful footage. Just think of it in Michael
Moore's next film... ;)

If the film camera is clearly visible, then it
should be ok legally.

Anyway, by publishing the cop's official visiting
card info, you're already reacting faster than
we did in Poland. Good luck!
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
11 Jul 2004
catching the man on your own home turf
hahahahahah ya gotta use what they give ya
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
12 Jul 2004
I agree that this behavior is unacceptable and should not be tolerated. People could simply have a tape recorder and hold it up to the cops so they know they are being recorded. I now carry one around just incase. It may provoke them, it may be argued as illegal, but I figure it will also assure that they use more caution when doing stuff like this. Also, anybody else notice that they are slowly stepping up the number of cops so it doesn't look like a sudden jump when the DNC comes? There used to be an average of 3 cops on Newbury Street on a given day. Last week I walked from Back Bay to Hynes Convention Center (via Newbury) and saw 12 police officers, including feds and undercover cops (unmarked cars, but they sat inside with their full uniform...) They are really worried about the DNC- I was told that they want the Mass General Hospital to have a de-contamination tent set up outside waiting if there is a terrorist attack. MGH said no, they had been having emergency drills and can set it up in 15 minutes, but the BPD said that wasn't fast enough. Just some food for thought to go along with their 3 foot long billyclubs.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
12 Jul 2004
I am not sure what the backround information of "tim" and his friend the "known anarchist organizer" is but It is my hope that charter or constitution of the group called "The Boston Anarchist Black Cross" is not operating against the massachusetts law stated below.

The ABC by putting anarchist in it's very name invites scrutiny by law enforcement officials. The police will use information gained from any forum to ensure that the "public at large" are safe and their constitutional rights are preserved. Protestors have a right to act but only so far as it does not infringe on others " the public at large" rights.

Having a group with the word anarchist in it may be fashionable and trendy, but, it is just asking to be investigated, appropriately i might add considering the state and federal laws against the support of anarchy.

come on folks use you head and realize when you have gone too far.

It would be advisable to not post anything that can be construed as against the law because each time it is and recorded the JTTF can use it to justify actions just like the suggestion to tim that it would be inadvisable for him to participate in the activities mentioned.

BOB Gorman

PS, I don't know of the legality of being hooded in protest and I am not advocating it. if you are hooded in a group of protestors beware you should carry extra hoods because when a hood is sprayed with pepper spray or CS after cleaning affected areas of your body with soapy water you should replace the contaminated hood with a new one. Even if the hood dries and seems OK when it again becomes wet due to moisture or sweat it will be irritating again. I know from previous training exercises (police) that when I got home later when showering the burning chemicals could be felt still.


GENERAL LAWS OF MASSACHUSETTS
PART IV.
CRIMES, PUNISHMENTS AND PROCEEDINGS IN CRIMINAL CASES

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TITLE I.
CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

CHAPTER 264. CRIMES AGAINST GOVERNMENTS

Chapter 264: Section 11 Promotion of anarchy; prohibition

Section 11. Whoever by speech or by exhibition, distribution or promulgation of any written or printed document, paper or pictorial representation advocates, advises, counsels or incites assault upon any public official, or the killing of any person, or the unlawful destruction of real or personal property, or the overthrow by force or violence or other unlawful means of the government of the commonwealth or of the United States, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than three years, or in jail for not more than two and one half years, or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars; provided, that this section shall not be construed as reducing the penalty now imposed for the violation of any law. It shall be unlawful for any person who shall have been convicted of a violation of this section, whether or not any sentence shall have been imposed, to perform the duties of a teacher or of an officer of administration in any public or private educational institution, and the superior court, in a suit by the commonwealth, shall have jurisdiction in equity to restrain and enjoin any such person from performing such duties thereafter; provided, that any such restraining order or injunction shall be forthwith vacated if such conviction shall be set aside.
Bring it on!
12 Jul 2004
I would LOVE to see them try to enforce the Criminal Anarchism law.

And actually you can interpret that as a direct, personal challenge.

We've been wanting to get old stupid anarchronistic laws like that one struck down for years but never get the chance because it is - of course - unenforced. The very first time it is actually brought as a charge to a court, it will be struck down immediately, so, to quote their own mythologies back at them a bit, "Bring it on!"
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
12 Jul 2004
MY COMMENTARY IN CAPS.
\
[Quote]Bring it on!
by @bcista
(No verified email address) 12 Jul 2004
I would LOVE to see them try to enforce the Criminal Anarchism law. [THE GOAL OF THE POLICE WILL NOT BE TO ENFORCE THE LAW BUT USE THE PERCEIVED VIOLATION OF THE LAW TO ENABLE THE POLICE TO CARRY OUT A PERCEIVED OBJECTIONABLE ACT. THE POLICE WILL USE IT TO GET AWAY WITH OTHER ARRESTS OR INTRUSIONS OF ONES RIGHTS THAT OTHERWISE IF NO LAW WAS VIOLATED. LIKE IN NY "TIM"

And actually you can interpret that as a direct, personal challenge. iF THIS PERSONAL CHALLENGE IS TO THE POLICE YOU SHOULD FIRST KNOW THAT NO POLICE WORK IS PERSONAL UNLESS THE LAWBREAKER MAKES IT THAT WAY. IT IS JUST A JOB AND IF A COP TAKES IT PERSONALLY HE SHOULD PROBABLY TRANSFER. IT IS JUST A PAYCHECK.

We've been wanting to get old stupid anarchronistic laws like that one struck down for years but never get the chance because it is - of course - unenforced. The very first time it is actually brought as a charge to a court, it will be struck down immediately, so, to quote their own mythologies back at them a bit, "Bring it on!" [END QUOTE] EXCELLENT POINT IT WOULD BE STRUCK DOWN. THATS WHY IT WON'T BE CHARGED IT IS A OPEN DOOR TO OTHER INVESTIGATORY OR POLICE ARREST ACTION.

I DON'T POST THE LAW TO INTIMIDATE YOU IT IS TO EDUCATE YOU ABOUT THE POLICE PERSPECTIVE. I DON'T WANT TO SEE PEOPLE NEEDLESSLY HARMED IN ANY MANNER WHETHER COPS OR PROTESTERS.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
13 Jul 2004
One note Bob. While I think the Boston chapter is new (someone correct me if I'm wrong), the Anarchist Black Cross has been around for quite some time, certainly since before anarchism gained heightened visibility after Seattle--both because some anarchists broke some windows and some more anarchist helped organize the nonviolent actions that shut down the opening meeting. (Not that I think breaking windows is violent--I just think it's not a terribly effective tactic. But that's another debate.) I don't think people use the term "anarchism" or "anarchist" because it's trendy or anything like that. It's a set of political beliefs that some people believe in quite strongly (myself included), a set of beliefs that has been thoroughly distorted and demonized by the mainstream press for well over a century, and most people who identify as anarchists are well aware of the stigma attached to the term. Perhaps some people use it for shock value, but most anarchists use the term because they believe in anarchism. Now there's a legitimate debate about whether it is wisest, in terms of reaching out to a wider public, to use such a stigmatized term, but I don't think anyone used it just because it's trendy.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
14 Jul 2004
Mathew Williams your post quoted below has beed one of the most reasoned and rational ones I have read in my short time at IMC. I apoligize if my post blanketed all people of your mindset as being only motivated by trends, etc. The type of person I had in mind was the college student that gets heavily involved in an activism and then after five years out of school no longer does any activism that they once might have.

I must say that I can respect your predisposition for elements of anarchy even if I don't agree with them. A former student had informed me last semester that her anarchy participations was very heartfelt and actually had a set of principles and tenents of anarchy. That actually confused me because I thought anarchy was a lack of structure an rules... my bad.

My post was to let people know how the police can use legal policy,law or regulation to justify actions which may be objectionable to the populous. As a cop the more regulations and law you know the better chance you can cover your butt when you (cop) screw up.

Cheers!!
ex-officer bob



[Quote]Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
by Matthew Williams
plaid_baboon (nospam) hotmail.com (unverified) 13 Jul 2004
One note Bob. While I think the Boston chapter is new (someone correct me if I'm wrong), the Anarchist Black Cross has been around for quite some time, certainly since before anarchism gained heightened visibility after Seattle--both because some anarchists broke some windows and some more anarchist helped organize the nonviolent actions that shut down the opening meeting. (Not that I think breaking windows is violent--I just think it's not a terribly effective tactic. But that's another debate.) I don't think people use the term "anarchism" or "anarchist" because it's trendy or anything like that. It's a set of political beliefs that some people believe in quite strongly (myself included), a set of beliefs that has been thoroughly distorted and demonized by the mainstream press for well over a century, and most people who identify as anarchists are well aware of the stigma attached to the term. Perhaps some people use it for shock value, but most anarchists use the term because they believe in anarchism. Now there's a legitimate debate about whether it is wisest, in terms of reaching out to a wider public, to use such a stigmatized term, but I don't think anyone used it just because it's trendy. [End Quote]
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
14 Jul 2004
The ABC started in Tsarist Russia so yeah it's been around a while.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
14 Jul 2004
Actaully, I heard that it started in Czarist Russia, which was Tsarist Russia's closest rival.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
19 Jul 2004
there have been other instances of police abuse too. while things are still as they are, it is hard to report every incident for fear of retribution, which cops like to take.

also, bob, it was nice of you to apologize, but you initial comments were rally patronizing and harmful. you divide the movement between those which are 'just asking for it,' and those who have rights. and you patronize a wide ideoligical tendency in the movement despite both its age and development, and the age and development of many of its adherents. and while i definitely agree with you about brief college-age activists (many of us call them tourists), there is also an inherent agism/age prejudice which youth, middle-aged and older activists need to watch out for more often.

"The ABC by putting anarchist in it's very name invites scrutiny by law enforcement officials.

Having a group with the word anarchist in it may be fashionable and trendy, but, it is just asking to be investigated, appropriately i might add considering the state and federal laws against the support of anarchy.

come on folks use you head and realize when you have gone too far.

It would be advisable to not post anything that can be construed as against the law...."
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
23 Jul 2004
Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Contact: Boston Anarchist Black Cross
Michael Andrews
617.851.5966
ABCboston-DNC04 (at) baamboston.org


FBI agents twice this week have visited the home of a local activist seeking information on people they say plan to protest the Democratic National Convention.

On Monday, July 19, at approximately 7 p.m., four FBI agents arrived at the home of a Boston activist while guests of the house were sitting on
the porch. The agents began to interrogate the guests with questions about the DNC protests and the whereabouts of the residents of the home.
The FBI agents also sought entrance to the house but could not produce a warrant when asked for one.

After the individuals present repeatedly refused to speak to the agents in absence of legal counsel, the agents left the porch but lingered
beyond the property for approximately 10 minutes before departing.

The agents returned to the house Tuesday afternoon seeking further information on activists they said they suspect of planning to protest the Democratic National Convention. The agents were again told that nobody felt comfortable talking to them without legal counsel present.

The Boston Anarchist Black Cross maintains that this type of intimidation and targeting of activists is unfounded, illegal, and
unacceptable. Local organizers have seen a surge in efforts by police to create fear in the public and in organizers, demonizing political
activists, creating an us-them dynamic and preemptively harassing activists so as to
have a chilling effect on First Amendment rights. This harrassment and intimidation campaign has increased in the weeks leading up to the DNC,
including a prior FBI visit to the home of a NYC activist on July 8, 2004.


About the Boston Anarchist Black Cross (ABC): The Boston Anarchist Black Cross is a prison abolition/prisoner support group affiliated with
the Anarchist Black Cross Network (www.anarchistblackcross.org). We support those on the inside as well as working on issues of community defense. Boston ABC is helping support protesters arrested during the DNC.

For more information, go to http://www.baamboston.org/abc/ or contact ABCboston-DNC04 (at) baamboston.org about the DNC protests.

###
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
23 Jul 2004
For Immediate Release

Statement from Kansas Mutual Aid Legal Collective July 22, 2004

Today we received news from friends and activists in Denver, Colorado
pertaining to incidents involving the Federal Bureau of Investigation and
possibly local law enforcement agencies.

It was communicated to us, that two houses in Denver had been raided by the

FBI and that at least two people had been arrested. Their charges and
situations are not at this time known to us. We do know that they were
asked questions about the upcoming election events including the Democratic

and Republican National Conventions, as well as questions about "ABC".

According to the person that contacted us, it is not thought that anything
of value had been taken from the houses, but multiple checks of
identification occurred. Agents were reported to have made threatening
statements to individuals who were attempting to record names and badge
numbers of those agents that were present.

This comes on the heels of repeated harrasment at the hands of state
agencies of activists in New York and Boston, as well as more locally in
Kirksville, Missouri, where activists were questioned by FBI and local
agencies about upcoming events surrounding the DNC and RNC.

We here at the Kansas Mutual Aid Legal Collective, denounce these strong
arm tactics by the state's law enforcement agencies. This crackdown on
those planning dissent comes right after the 900th U.S. soldier was killed
in Iraq, and support for the state's wars abroad and at home wanes.

We call on all activists, dissidents, radicals... all progressive peoples
to join in a solid response to this encroachment on our rights as human
beings.

We cannot, and will not be intimidated, nor scared into submission. There
has never been a more crucial moment in our history to speak out and show
opposition and defiance to those that exploit and dominate us and the rest
of the world.

Kansas Mutual Aid will continue to monitor these events and find lawyers,
raise legal funds, and provide assistance in whatever way we can.

Fear may be their weapon of choice... solidarity will be ours.

In solidarity, forever.

Kansas Mutual Aid Legal Collective
913-775-1399
kansasmutualaid (at) hotmail.com
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
23 Jul 2004
Latest Update: 11:50 AM central time:

At this point the FBI has tried to contact at least 20 local anarchists
here in Lawrence by phone calls, visiting workplaces, visiting parents,
or their own residences.

Things are heating up here.

Kansas Mutual Aid.
When the FBI Knocks
23 Jul 2004
Know your rights if the FBI ever knocks on your door.

http://www.msn.fullfeed.com/~lorax/old-slack/whenthefbiknocks.html
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
24 Jul 2004
The first thing to do if the Enemy is at the gate is to SLAM IT IN HIS FACE! Do not even answer the door for these motherfuckers-instead warn them that they are trespassing on your property and are to leave immediately.

If they do not comply they should be treated as burglars.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
27 Jul 2004
Good for those detectives! They can come into my home any time. I have nothing to hide and don't want to disrupt any meetings just to pull off some lame political msg thereby endangering everyone around them with the activity. Get jobs. Get out and make a difference where it matters not by causing problems for our underpaid officers of the law.
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
27 Jul 2004
Seamonsta,

People who are concerned about their civil rights and community also have jobs, and many of them are grossly underpaid for _their_ service they provide for their work. Why should the cops be allowed to behave like assholes while civilians who are demonstrating for better lives, just because certain law enforcement individuals (not all, clearly)have control issues?
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
27 Jul 2004
People have a right to demonstrate and protest for their lives and community so long as they are not threatening the well-being others. It is the responsibility of law enforcement officials to restrain themselves from censuring people if no valid threat exists to anybody else (egos and feelings don't count).
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
10 Nov 2005
Hello guys, interesting discussion... BTW what you think about <a href=http://zerohops.com/>Fight against alcohols and drugs detox</a>
Re: Harassment of DNC Protesters Escalates
10 Nov 2005
Hello guys, interesting discussion... BTW what you think about <a href=http://zerohops.com/>Fight against drugs and alcohols detox</a>
volvo car
08 Jun 2006
You have an outstanding good and well structured site. I enjoyed browsing through it.
skoda auto
10 Jun 2006
Wonderful and informative web site.I used information from that site its great.
mortgage calculator
11 Jun 2006
You have an outstanding good and well structured site. I enjoyed browsing through it.
jaguar franchise
13 Jun 2006
Thank you for your site. I have found here much useful information...
toy hobby
17 Jun 2006
Very cool design! Useful information. Go on!
hummer dealer
18 Jun 2006
Cool guestbook, interesting information... Keep it UP. excellent site i really like your stuff.
movies film
19 Jun 2006
Cool!.. Nice work...