Monday, October 1, 2012. New York City – A federal judge today ruled that the NYPD engaged in unlawful mass arrests and fingerprinting of hundreds of peaceful protesters during the 2004 Republican National Convention in Manhattan.
In cases brought by the New York Civil Liberties Union and others, U.S. District Court Judge Richard Sullivan declared unlawful the Aug. 31, 2004 mass arrest of more than 200 peaceful protesters near Church and Fulton streets in Lower Manhattan. He also rejected the city’s claim that it had lawfully arrested another nearly 400 people near Union Square, concluding that the plaintiffs were entitled to a trial about that location.
“We’re gratified that the judge rejected the city’s claim that the NYPD has the discretion to engage in mass arrests when officers observe individual unlawful activity,” NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman said. “This ruling is a victory for the right to protest – a core democratic principle. It places an important check on the abusive policing tactics used to suppress protests during the 2004 RNC.”
Additionally, Judge Sullivan ruled that the NYPD’s mass fingerprinting of people arrested during the RNC protests violated a state law.
“Today the federal court emphatically rejected the city’s claim that it could make mass arrests of protesters,” NYCLU Associate Legal Director Christopher Dunn, who is lead counsel on the Convention cases, said. “With this ruling, the time has come for the city to put this controversy behind it, to settle the rest of the Convention cases, and to make sure that mass arrests never happen again here.”
Today’s rulings involve a series of lawsuit the NYCLU and others filed after the 2004 RNC challenging the mass arrest, prolonged detention, and blanket fingerprinting of protesters.
See on Gothamist.com Sullivan’s full opinion.
On Saturday, October 1, 2011, the NYPD also conducted unlawful mass arrests of peaceful protesters. I was covering a march of the Occupy Wall St. Movement on the Brooklyn Bridge where more than 700 hundred people were arrested, including me.
Apparently, NYC Mayor Bloomberg has not respect for the United States Constitution.
Articles and videos of the 2004 Republican National Convention in NYC.
The New York Civil Liberties Union published the NYPD’s Republican National Convention Documents.
This page archives New York Police Department intelligence documents that pertain to the policing of protest activity before and during the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York City.
According to The New York Times, “For at least a year before the 2004 Republican National Convention, teams of undercover New York City police officers traveled to cities across the country, Canada and Europe to conduct covert observations of people who planned to protest at the convention, according to police records and interviews.”
Shot almost exclusively during the Republican National Convention in New York, this film, Watch This! (2004) will surprise you about what really went on in the streets of NYC. A series of personal stories are intertwined to form a disjointedly coherent vision of reality. This complex reality breaks through the superficial nature of current political and social discourse.
Gothamist.com reports that. “Hacer Dinler, is a dance instructor from Brooklyn who was on her way to work when she suddenly found herself penned in by police on the sidewalk on 16th Street by Union Square. She says police would not let her leave, and she was swept up with the protesters. “After about two hours in confinement, during which time the NYPD ignored her repeated calls for help, Dinler fainted and experienced convulsions,” NYCLU lawyers claim. “She was eventually transported by ambulance to St. Vincent’s Hospital, where she underwent testing and treatment until the following morning.””
Republican National Convention Protest – NYC 2004 – Part 1.
(The cameraman was not allow to film at Penn Station. Why?
Republican National Convention Protest – NYC 2004. Part 2.
Unlawful Mass Arrest 8-29-04 R.N.C. in N.Y.C.
(This video is currently submitted as evidence in a class-action lawsuit against suppression of first amendment rights.)
In 2004, during the Republican National Convention in New York City, over 1800 people were arrested. It was the largest mass arrest in the history of American political conventions.
The After Party Synopsis
THE AFTER PARTY is a documentary feature film about a journalist who is caught in a mass arrest while filming a protest at Ground Zero. His film crew’s videotape of the incident leads to a civil rights lawsuit, uncovers a police spying ring and launches his personal investigation in to the weird world of domestic surveillance. With special appearances by Andre “3000” Benjamin, Barack Obama, The Bush Twins, Cornel West, Al Sharpton and Don King.
In 1993 the film THE LAST PARTY was released. The documentary followed Robert Downey Jr’s initiation in to the world of politics. In 2000 came the sequel, THE PARTY’S OVER, following Philip Seymour Hoffman on the campaign trail. The third film in the trilogy, THE AFTER PARTY is a story about domestic surveillance and civil liberties in the post 9/11 era, framed by an inciting incident that happened during the 2004 Republican National Convention. Told from the perspective of a cinematographer who was arrested during the convention, this film brings together pop culture and politics with the flair of ‘gonzo’ journalism.
In August of 2004, during the course of the Republican National Convention in New York City, over 1800 people were arrested. The police used orange construction netting to arrest large groups of people. A documentary film crew working on a movie about Andre “3000” of Outkast was caught in one of these nets while filming a protest at Ground Zero. The film crew’s tape became instrumental evidence in a lawsuit that was filed by cinematographer Michael Schiller. Schiller vs. the City of New York is a landmark first amendment case that uncovered a warrantless police spying operation. This film takes a hard look at the precariously thin line we walk between security and freedom and examines the resurgence of domestic surveillance in America. It is the exclamation point at the end of a political documentary trilogy 20 years in the making.