888 turk

Punching Down - Episode 19

Could anything be more fun than getting kettled and cuffed by the cops for allegedly messing with a railroad?

How about the SFPD busting into an urban commune (where you were charging your phone), and pointing a so-called less lethal shotgun at your face?

If you happen to be a journalist, that’s where the fun sort of ends, actually, in part because it’s kind of difficult to report the news when your hands are zip tied and you’re sitting in the sheriff bus.

This week we’re delighted to have as our guest independent journalist Steve Rhodes who describes in detail these true stories about getting arrested while reporting.

For those that don’t already know Steve, he’s often seen covering the news in the Bay Area, including the spectacular April 1 takeover of an abandoned building in San Francisco by Occupy SF, and the forceful eviction by the cops the next day.

Besides his two arrests, Steve also talks about the path that’s led him to become one of the region’s essential sources for real-time information and images.

Made with SoundCloud

The interior of the building and exterior walls in a rear courtyard were heavily marked by spray paint / graffiti. The graffiti took many forms some of which consisted of anarchy symbols, the words, “Burn it down,"  "New Social Order,” and “Kill Cops"  were painted in various places throughout the building interior. Anarchist and white supremacy literature was also seen inside one of the rooms.   Interior doors and fixtures were removed or disassembled and were used to heavily barricade entry/exit doors in an apparent effort to keep police officers from gaining entry.

–From San Francisco Police Department press release on Occupy San Francisco’s "SF Commune” at 888 Turk, from Public Information Officer Michael Andraychak. The building was raided today in an effort by SFPD and county sheriffs, resulting in 75 arrests for misdemeanor trespassing on the Catholic church property, left vacant for several years. Piece with sketches coming tomorrow for Truthout.