Los Angeles County Files Criminal Charges against Three Demonstrators

City attorney files charges against protesters who disrupted L.A. City Council meeting

A city attorney has filed criminal charges against three people who were arrested Thursday during a demonstration about the city council’s upcoming election.

The charges are the result of a joint investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Public Corruption and Police Complaint Review Sections and the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office of Strategic Planning and Organized Crime.

The three people arrested Thursday afternoon from San Francisco, Berkeley and Oakland were charged with disorderly conduct.

The misdemeanor charges involve “blocking” a sidewalk, which is a code violation for demonstrators to remain on the sidewalk, according to Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Stephanie Yao.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re blocking traffic,” Yao said. “If you’re blocking the sidewalk, you’re committing a (misdemeanor) civil trespass, and we will prosecute it like that.”

Three demonstrators were arrested. One of the demonstrators, a man in his 40s from Berkeley, was arrested for blocking a public sidewalk. The other two were arrested for engaging in a riot and resisting arrest.

During the demonstration, the three demonstrators yelled at police officers to “get out of (their) way,” a sheriff’s department news release said. The demonstrators also “were caught on camera yelling derogatory racial names toward the police officers.”

The news release said the demonstrators were peacefully arrested and charged with misdemeanor charges.

“These actions are not reflective of all the people demonstrating peacefully in downtown L.A. today,” Yao said Friday. “Not everyone is charged with violating a law.”

Protesters with the group “Unite Against Police Brutality” marched through downtown for a second day Friday afternoon.

“This is a way to send a message to the powers that be that the people are not buying the lies,” said a demonstration organizer. �

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