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Occupy L.A. Group Marches Back To City Hall

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LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Occupy L.A. protesters marched back to City Hall Wednesday night and reassembled at the west steps.

Some demonstrators attempted to take down the fence that was erected around City Hall Park before fellow protesters intervened.

The fence was put in place Wednesday morning after the LAPD cleared the encampment where Occupy L.A. protesters had been camped since Oct. 1.

Mayor Villaraigosa announced the intended eviction of the Occupy L.A. camp last week, and gave demonstrators a deadline to clear out by midnight Monday.

The group defied the order and asked a federal judge to intervene.

Late Wednesday night, around 1,200 officers began to move in to the area around City Hall to force protesters out. After announcing an unlawful assembly, 292 arrests were made, and tents were removed from the park.

The court where the injunction was filed announced later Wednesday that the injunction was denied since protesters had been cleared out of the park before the request ever reached a judge.

About 100 protesters gathered at Pershing Square in Los Angeles Wednesday night before marching back to City Hall where LAPD officers stood watch.

“We’re back because this is freedom of speech,” said protester Caity Malcolm. “There is no steam rolling us.”

They say they will return each night.

“Most of us just want to have our general assembly,” said protester Bradley Maxwell, “which is where we talk about ideas and proposals, and move the movement forward.”

Villaraigosa said Sunday despite the park closure, the steps of City Hall would remain open during park hours to the Occupy L.A. movement, as well as other groups who wish to exercise their freedom of speech.

“We will close and rebuild the park,” said Villaraigosa, “so that any individual will have the opportunity to use this free speech zone to exercise their first amendment rights at City Hall.”

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