Art Walk Riot Averted; LAPD, Occupy Can All Get Along, Apparently | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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Art Walk Riot Averted; LAPD, Occupy Can All Get Along, Apparently

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Fri, Aug 10, 2012 at 12:59 PM

click to enlarge NANETTE GONZALEZ
  • Nanette Gonzalez
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*The Messages of Chalkupy Slideshow.

The news media prepared for the worst, but it turned out the only riot was over news van parking spaces at the monthly event called Art Walk in downtown Los Angeles.

We kid. The LAPD was geared up as notoriously vociferous demonstrators from Occupy Oakland came down to L.A. to support their Chalk Walk brethren at last night's Art Walk after protesters clashed with police over Chalkupy "vandalism" at last month's festivities.

The night was hot, but things were peaceful this time. Why?

Both sides -- Occupy L.A. and the LAPD -- are claiming the other backed off.

In a statement on its Facebook page, Occupy says it was all about the department's stance:

So what was different about last night and last month? There weren't 150 riot police present. Imagine that, riot police who come dress for a fight, not present and everything remains peaceful even with hundreds of more Occupiers and their allies around. Note: there are no documented cases of anyone ever being shot , tasered, or gassed with a piece of chalk.

LAPD Officer Rosario Herrera says it was all about Occupy's observance of the law. While July's clash started with chalking vandalism, a takeover of a busy downtown intersection and the throwing of rocks and bottles at cops, according to the department's take, none of that happened last night.

Herrera:

No one was vandalizing or blocking the streets, so everything was peaceful.

There were two arrests yesterday morning, one for a warrant and one for alleged battery. But what the LAPD considers vandalism was allowed to happen during an Occupy chalking event at nearby Pershing Square.

About 100 people showed up for the Chalkupy party about 7 p.m. and, two hours later, the crowd moved over the Art Walk along Spring Street, according to City News Service.

The extra officers deployed to the area, however, weren't necessary.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

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