Officials: Journalists Among Those Arrested During Zuccotti Park
Officials say several journalists were arrested while covering the raid and eviction of Occupy Wall Street protesters from Zuccotti Park on Tuesday.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said the journalists were among 200 who were arrested following the raid.
Associated Press writer Karen Matthews was taken into custody Tuesday along with AP photographer Seth Wenig and Daily News reporter Matthew Lysiak.
Wall Street Journal reporter Alison Fox saw Matthews and Lysiak being placed in handcuffs. Another AP reporter later saw Matthews and Wenig being removed in a police van.
Freelance radio journalist Julie Walker who was reporting for NPR says she was arrested on disorderly conduct.
Other freelancers were also reportedly arrested.
Police didn’t have a count of how many journalists were arrested and didn’t immediately comment.
After hearing about the arrests and alleged media access restrictions placed on journalists during the raid, PEN American Center and PEN International issued a statement.
“PEN American Center and PEN International today condemned restrictions on press coverage of police crackdowns on Occupy Wall Street demonstrations in New York and elsewhere, calling the arrests of journalists, the grounding of media helicopters and the restrictions on access to the Occupy sites ‘an obvious abridgement of the First Amendment right of all Americans to monitor official actions that clearly carry their own First Amendment concerns.’”
The city says police normally keep the press at a distance to protect them.
Also among those arrested was New York City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez.