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Soares on Occupy Albany
October 24th, 2011

“For some people who arent familiar with Albany this may seem like some big event,” said Albany County District Attorney David Soares referring to “Occupy Albany.”

“For me, driving by the Capitol and seeing the protests–this is just a Monday– you have protests here all the time. We have people exercising their first amendment rights peacefully. It has been our position not to prosecute them if they are arrested and this time we put it out there that this was our position beforehand,” Soares said responding to reports that his reluctance to prosecute Occupy Albany Protesters stopped the Albany Police Department from bending to pressure from Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Albany Mayor Jerry Jennings to arrest protesters for violating a curfew.

“Sure there are some people that come from out of town who want to break things or attack law enforcement as acts of civil disobedience, to get on television but these are not those people,” said Soares.

“The backdrop to this is that on Friday we had three kids shot and you are going to try and tell Chief Krokoff to take his officers off those cases to arrest people who are playing the guitar and eating cider donuts?”

Two fifteen-year-olds and a twenty year old were shot in Albany’s West Hill neighborhood on Friday. Soares says that Albany County does not have the resources to arrest and prosecute people involved in peaceful protest.

Soares says he has had “open lines of communications” with the protest organizers and the police department since before the protests started. He says he has checked in with them about concerns he had about providing proper provisions for the children and elderly present at the protest and that he and the APD continue to monitor the situation. But he says he has not hasn’t been pressured by any official to make arrests.

By on October 24, 2011, 11:11 am
In category: Albany,Civil Rights,Crime & Safety,Economy,Eye on Albany | 18 Comments »

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18 Responses to “Soares on Occupy Albany”

  1. David Says:
    October 24th, 2011 at 11:55 am

    Do your job Soares and arrest the squatters if they refuse to leave the park after curfew. No special rights for any protest group. You a setting a very dangerous precedence.

  2. Josh Says:
    October 24th, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    Free speech doesn’t have a curfew. Throwing out a group of peaceful protesters is what would be setting a very dangerous precedence.

  3. David Says:
    October 24th, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    Au contraire my friend, every town, city or locality have laws on the books that regulate public protests so that all groups are treated equally. You don’t see any camp outs in Wash DC do you? 8 to 8 is sufficient and does not interfere with free speech rights. Occupy protesters have been removed in many cities across the country for violating the same law.

    In Albany, however a left leaning Soares must pander to his base so he allows the law to be broken.

  4. Proud Primate Says:
    October 24th, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    “precedence” is a STATE of one thing preceding something else.

    The word you guys want is “precedent”, which refers to a THING that takes precedence over something else.

  5. kate Says:
    October 25th, 2011 at 8:55 am

    The APD and DA are following usual policy. There are protests at the Capitol regularly, and people who sleep in the park are not arrested. Enforcing a law now that is not enforced in other situations would be discriminatory.

  6. Emmy Says:
    October 25th, 2011 at 11:42 am

    David, if you read the entire article, you would see that the precedent of allowing protestors to sleep in the park has already been set, so arresting and charging them would be going against usual practice. How often have you broken the law by the way? How often have you rolled through a stop sign or gone 63 in a 55 MPH zone or sailed through a red light, or double parked? Were you caught each and every time? I am sure you have broken those laws before and were not caught. Perhaps you should turn yourself in, in keeping with your zero tolerance for anyone who does not follow the law to the letter.

  7. David Says:
    October 25th, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    Let’s be real people. The city of Albany is giving up a park to make it a permanent 24 hour protest location. This is what the mayor is allowing. If thats the case, will other protest groups with different view points also get equal time?

    It’s obvious the permitting process is being ignored. There is no way you can get a permit for an indefinite protest.

    Let me say this again, Left leaning Mayor Jerry and DA Soares are sympathetic to the protesters and will not enforce the law.

  8. Eric Says:
    October 26th, 2011 at 1:46 am

    We-are-not-squatters….come-join-and-be-educated…..do-you-not-understand-why-we-and-people-GLOBALLY-are-doing-this?

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    October 27th, 2011 at 12:08 am

    No thanks. I will by pass the re-education camps.

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