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Occupy Wall Street alleges NYPD 'brutality,' calls for May 1 rally

OWS protesters

OWS protesters Photo Credit: Occupy Wall Street protesters and politicians at a news conference in Zuccotti Park (Getty)

Occupy Wall Street is calling for a massive day of action on May 1 in response to its clashes with police last weekend, asking for people to skip work or school and take to the streets.

Seventy-three people were arrested at Zuccotti Park on Saturday as the movement celebrated its six-month anniversary, and protesters say the NYPD used "brutal" force when it kicked out hundreds of people from the privately owned space.

At a news conference Monday, some City Council members condemned the NYPD's actions on Saturday and proposed a "Protester's Bill of Rights" to outline rights for occupiers.

"I am here today because Saturday night I saw the New York Police Department using brutal, excessive force arresting people who were protesting peacefully," Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez said at the news conference, according to published reports.

"We are calling on Mayor [Michael] Bloomberg and Commissioner [Ray] Kelly to fight for our constitutional rights as hard as they fight terrorism."

Bloomberg responded saying that the department "knows how to control crowds without excessive force," according to the AP.

A so-called "permanent" occupation that sprang up Sunday night in Union Square Park also continued Monday, where dozens gathered and reportedly claimed the spot is the movements new home base.

Meanwhile, police continued their investigation into a tweet sent Saturday night that said, "we wont make a difference if we dont kill a cop or 2."

The man who sent the tweet, identified by the Daily News as Florida restaurant manager Rusty Braxton, said the whole situation was a "misunderstanding."

"I'm not a cop hater," Braxton, 23, told the Daily News. "I don't want any cops killed. They're doing their job. They're civil servants," he said, adding that he's never been to New York or an OWS protest.

Follow reporter Tim S. Herrera on Twitter: @tim_herrera


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