San Diego Homeless Protest Update FWD

Tom Boland (wgcp@earthlink.net)
Fri, 5 Jun 1998 22:18:43 -0700 (PDT)


FWD via Jennafer Waggoner <refugee@gte.net> http://www.solcommunications.com


  SAN DEIGO HOMELESS PROTEST UPDATE

  From Roger Scott


       Yesterday Lt. Ellis of the San Diego Police came down to the City Hall
to inform Dan Fagin that the protestors would have to move from the front of
City Hall in two weeks. Dan said he'd never heard Ellis talk in such a
demanding way, so someone must be leaning on him. The reason he gave us was
that we were no longer protesting, but were living there. Protestors refused
to move. We have several signs, so we believe it is still a protest. An
average of about 138 people sleep there, and in the morning most of them leave
with their stuff. Only about 20 or so remain during the day to protest. Why do
the police continue the prior restraint on our first amendment rights? Where
does the city expect us to go? Every place we stay is illegal.
      This morning the police arrived at 5 AM telling us that we had to leave
or else. I saw only one squad car. Nobody moved, and the police finally left.
I could see them calling in on their radio to somebody.
      Today Dan Fagan, Forrest Curo and I went to court to try to consolidate
the two lawsuits against the city and the concourse security. It was like two
peacocks showing their feathers--one side hurling demands at the other. The
opposing party doesn't want Forrest to add us to his suit, but wants to make
us file a formal complaint and then a motion to consolidate the two lawsuits:
Forrest Curo's and Dan Fagan's and mine.
      Present were the City Attorney and attorneys for the Convention Center
Police and Wells Fargo, who did security for City Hall in 1997. They claim the
issues are not the same, although the new complaint will be exactly the same
as the old complaint.  The following are the issues:
      1. There is no city process for applying for a permit to allow us to
stay there.
      2. The county has one, but does not allow us to stay overnight.
      3. City building manager complains about belongings stored at site while
people look for jobs, etc.
      4. Sleeping is a form of protest at night.
      5. Police are really harassing us now worse than before.
      6. We maintain safety for street people at the protest.
      7. The building manager complains about our signs taped to the building.
      8. The judge wouldn't even consider our request to put an injunction
against the police.
      A court date has been set in December. We have to file a discovery and
other documents first. On the way out, Dan Fagan spoke with the city attorney
and the other attorneys suggesting that they could save the city money by
putting us on Forrest's suit. But they said no, you gotta do your own. Dan
also suggested that the site at 20th and B would be an acceptable spot for 50
to 100 people to camp. Jim (the city attorney) said it would be expensive
because we'd have to get portable toilets and insurance, etc.

Roger Scott

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