Update: By 1am, when the Hollywood crowd had moved south to Sunset and Cahuenga, close to the Cinerama Dome, the LAPD gave the order to disperse. Most did, however the police eventually fired beanbags at the lingeres and severla arrests were made, one for assualt on a police officer. More protests are planned today.
Los Angeles is on citywide tactical alert tonight, Sunday. One protestor arrested in Hollywood, a woman.
Peaceful marchers shut down the 10 Freeway for about half an hour, from 6pm to 6:30pm. About 50-100 protestors walked onto the freeway, the east/west artery also known as the Santa Monica Freeway. Police stopped traffic and the freeway marchers dispersed before the police could broadcast an order. That march moved back onto Crenshaw Blvd. and splintered into smaller marches. Some bottles were thrown, but no arrests made.
At 9pm, a march north on La Brea Blvd. included walkers and slow moving cars, about 100 people and maybe 30 vehicles, stopped traffic at La Brea and Beverly. La Brea is a major north/south street which runs from near Los Angeles International Airport, acting as a divide for the the Fairfax District and Hancock Park. Further north it is the eastern border of West Hollywood (WeHo is a city separate from LA; it uses the sheriffs as law enforcement) and the western border of Hollywood (which is part of LA proper). Cops in riot gear showed up at at La Brea and Beverly and the crowd moved further north towards Hollywood.
By 10pm, the march had reached Hollywood Blvd, shutting that street down from La Brea east to Highland (that would be in front of the Chinese Theater and the Dolby Theater at Hollywood and Highland, where the Oscars happen; across the street are the El Capitan Theater and Jimmy Kimmel’s studio).
Protesters blocked the intersection at Hollywood and Highland by 10:30pm, while tourists snapped photos. The Hollywood Bowl, just up Highland, with more people on foot and in cars, is about to let out at 11pm. Police were getting ready to broadcast
get on on the sidewalk and get moving.
Commander Andy Smith who handled Occupy LA (and did a pretty decent job) said that he didn’t want to interfere with First Amendment rights, but that safety was a priority as well as adhering to legal protest laws.
California Highway Patrol are also blocking the freeway entrances and exits along the 10 in the areas around Leimert Park, an historic black district which is really messing up traffic (we already have two major freeways, the 5 and 2 closed for a few miles because of a tanker fire and fuel spill Saturday in the northbound interchange tunnel).
While a news report on KCLA 9 said protesters wanted to march to Beverly Hills, a five mile walk that would take them through West Hollywood and the sheriffs (and during the LA riots, the Beverly Hills Police set up armed barricades at all intersections leading into that city), protestors were moving east, the opposite direction, toward my direction. If they get here, I’ll be dressed and ready, but as my housemate pointed out, it’s getting late, and this is L.A. (which is why I took photos of my TV!)