LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The Los Angeles Police Department made mass arrests of demonstrators Wednesday during the third night of protest in response to the grand jury decision in the Michael Brown case.
According to officers, protesters were arrested an hour after an unlawful assembly was declared in the area of Sixth Street and Hope Street.
They were seen being escorted by officers one by one, with hands zip-tied behind their backs, onto LAPD buses meant for transportation to jail.
SKY9’s Stu Mundel reported from overhead that one bus was seen leaving the area filled with protesters shortly before 9 p.m.
Two other buses remained on scene to transport protesters to several jails in the area.
KCAL9’s Peter Daut spoke with LAPD Lt. Andy Neiman, who reported dozens of protesters had been taken into custody.
In total, 130 demonstrators were arrested Wednesday night.
“Right now, they are under arrest for failing to disperse,” Neiman explained. “A dispersal order was given earlier this evening. We’ve been following this group for some time now, and at this point we were finally able to contain them.
“Those arrested will be able to post bail, amounting to about $500 for this particular charge,” Nemain added.
Individuals who do not post bail will remain in jail until they go to court early next week.
Those arrested were part of a larger group of more than 100 people of a group called The Coalition for Community Control Over the Police that began protesting in the downtown area around 4 p.m. outside the federal courthouse on Spring Street.
They began to march on Alameda Street away from police headquarters shortly after 5 p.m. toward Staples Center.
Tonight, the Los Angeles Lakers played the Memphis Grizzlies inside the arena.
A second group of demonstrators symbolically laid in a circle on the corner of Cesar Chavez and Alameda.
SKY2’s Stu Mundel reported from overhead that the group was prevented from marching in the area of Vignes near Cesar Chavez around 6 p.m.
Officers prevented the crowd was from reaching Staples Center at the corner of Seventh Street and Flower Street.
Around 8 p.m., about three dozen officers corralled the group in the intersection of Sixth and Hope with the intention to detain and or arrest demonstrators.
Protesters were seen linked arm-in-arm, pushing officers while shouting, “Let us go, let us go!”
KCAL9’s Peter Daut was in the area as the mood turned tense, and officers wearing helmets holding batons addressed the agitated crowd throwing water bottles at them.
The group was reportedly instructed to not break any laws but to simply voice their opinions, KCAL9’s Randy Paige explained.
Earlier today, numerous demonstrators protested across Los Angeles in other demonstrations.
Barricades were set up in the downtown area as precautionary measures.
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck explained to KCAL9’s Dave Lopez that there wouldn’t necessarily be a zero-tolerance policy held regarding street demonstrations.
“We have given folks a wealth of opportunity to make their case known,” Beck said. “We cannot continue to expand resources chasing people around the city of Los Angeles to do that.”
Several protestors halted traffic on the southbound Hollywood (101) Freeway near downtown Los Angeles.
About a dozen people stopped vehicles around 9 a.m. near Alvarado Street, according to the California Highway Patrol.
The LAPD responded to assist the CHP and all lanes were reopened a short time later.
Eight people were arrested.
“This turned into an unlawful protest. We asked the people to please get up off the freeway ramp and leave. They wouldn’t. And they also proceeded to graffiti the freeway – they wrote disparaging comments along the freeway,” LAPD Capt. Brian Pratt said. “We basically went through a three-step process — we asked them to leave, we then had to tell them to leave and then we had to make them leave because they wouldn’t leave the freeway and were endangering their own and public safety.”
The group was expected to be booked on misdemeanor charges for vandalism, disturbing the peace and blocking the roadway.
KCAL9’s Amy Johnson reported officers are prepared should anyone else try to take to the streets later tonight.
Several demonstrations have taken place throughout the Southland, included dozens of protesters who shut down the 101 Freeway at Grand Avenue around 9 p.m. Tuesday night. The freeway was reopened about an hour later. Approximately 180 protesterswere arrested throughout the night.
“We want people to voice their public opinion, but voice it legally. Don’t block freeways, don’t put other people at unnecessary risk and don’t put yourself at unnecessary risk. Do it peacefully, do it lawfully in a proper way,” Pratt said.
The protests are in response to Monday’s announcement that St. Louis County jurors decided not to indict Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson for the fatal Aug. 9 shooting of Michael Brown, 18.
KCAL9’s Andrea Fugii spoke with several protestors who said they are willing to continue demonstrations on Thursday.
In total, 323 protestors have been arrested since demonstrations began Monday night.
According to KCAL9’s David Goldstein, arrest reports of Ferguson protestors in Los Angeles revealed many were in their 20s and 30s.