On Monday, January 9th, the first Chapel Hill Town Council meeting of the year was greeted with a wave of anger and controversy over the violent police eviction of last year’s Yates Building occupation.
Aproximately 40 protesters marched from the site of Occupy Chapel Hill, at the Post Office on Franklin St., taking up two lanes of traffic, banging on drums, and waving black flags. One banner, in reference to what police claim to have found inside the occupied building, read, “We are all flammable materials, our hearts are bags of rocks.”
When the group reached Town Hall, people surrounded the windows of the meeting room and plastered them with taped-up banners and signs denouncing the armed police raid. Protesters yelled speeches against the police and capitalism, and called the police advisory committee “a farce.”
Others filled the room itself, waiting their turn to rail against the council members and mayor.
The fresh wave of anger was largely spurned by the “review” of the eviction just finished by Town Manager Roger Stancil. The review was a whitewash of the police action, barely acknowledging the public outrage over the incident and containing several falsities, for example omitting the fact that occupants were never once told they were trespassing or asked to leave the building.
In an interview with the News and Observer, Carrboro Town Alderman Dan Coleman brings up this omission, and criticizes the report.
The Town Council refused to consider numerous calls for an independent review of the police action, despite the controversy.
More media articles as well as pictures can be found here:
News and Observer: http://www.newsobserver.com/2012/01/09/1766088/loud-protestors-greet-review-of.html
Daily Tar Heel: http://www.dailytarheel.com/index.php/article/2012/01/yates_building_raid_to_be_further_investigated