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Arrest at the RNC in St. Paul, Minnesota

Posted in Misc Crime September 5th, 2008 @ 10:51 am

The RNC (Republican National Convention) four-day event in St. Paul, Minnesota ended with over 800 arrests of protestors in related incidents. The Ramsey County sheriff’s office broke down the arrests as 716 in Ramsey County and 102 arrest in Minneapolis according to the Pioneer Press . Scenes on TV showed anarchists smashing windows and turning over cement trash receptacles. On the last night of the convention, 396 people were arrested for misdemeanors and according to the Ramsey County sheriff’s department, some of those arrested on Thursday night had guns or other weapons.

When you compare the number of arrests at the DNC (Democrat National Convention) in Denver last week, police had fewer protestors and fewer arrests. During that week, Denver police arrested 150 protestors. However, just recently announced , the Denver police have found items stashed around the city before and during the Democratic National Convention. Whether these items were intentionally stashed by people planning violence or not, may have played a part in keeping the peace during the DNC.

The Denver police and public works officials disclosed that they confiscated items such as multiple bags of feces stockpiled in Lower Downtown. They also found about 200 bottles of human urine in a vacant house, 30 to 40 stakes that were about 6 feet long, broken hockey sticks near the Colorado Convention Center, and a gas can and two propane tanks chained to fences in LoDo.

Officials admit that there were more protesters in St. Paul than in Denver. Denver thought 20,000 people might show up to march. The number was more like 5,000. Denver officials and protestors agreed that Denver had a different approach to protestors than St. Paul. Denver officials began meeting with the protestors over a year ago to make it clear that they wanted to have only non-violent, peaceful protests demonstrations and that they would jail any protestors immediately.

Whether open dialogue or less protestors made for fewer arrests is hard to tell. One theory is that political protesters may have been more of a problem in St. Paul because of the Republican Party’s politics.

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