City | 1:50 pm | April 18, 2012 | By Nick Defiesta

Occupy departs the New Haven Green

Occupy New Haven protesters began packing their belongings Tuesday after a federal appeals court ruled in favor of the city, paving the way for the protest’s eviction. The ruling ended a protracted lawsuit in which Occupy protesters hoped to prevent the city from removing their months-old encampment on the Upper Green.
Occupy New Haven protesters began packing their belongings Tuesday after a federal appeals court ruled in favor of the city, paving the way for the protest’s eviction. The ruling ended a protracted lawsuit in which Occupy protesters hoped to prevent the city from removing their months-old encampment on the Upper Green. Photo by Victor Kang.

Six months after setting up camp on the New Haven Green, Occupy New Haven protesters were evicted from their encampment on Wednesday.

Police removed protesters early Wednesday morning, allowing officials from the city’s parks department to clear the Upper Green of tents and debris. The eviction a day after the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the city could legally remove Occupiers from the Green, the final step in the city’s months-long attempt to remove Occupy from the Green.

Beginning at around 8 a.m., police began to arrest protesters who sat and linked arms around a tent and refused to leave. After the immediate campground was free of protesters, and a hazmat team examined tents and debris for any dangerous material, bulldozers began to clear the encampment.

At a press conference after the eviction, DeStefano affirmed his support of Occupy’s ideals. But the movement had become more focused on maintaining its place on the Green than driving conversations about income inequality. The cost of the occupation — including city services and restoration of the Green — will total around $145,000, he said. The Green should be restored before summer, a representative from the parks department said.

Occupiers are free to return to the Green following the eviction, provided they follow park guidelines, DeStefano said. By the Green’s regulations, protesters can remain in the public space until 10 p.m.

Occupy New Haven, which arrived in the city on Oct. 15, was the longest lasting encampment of the Occupy protest movement in New England.

Comments
  • Sam

    Good riddance!

  • peconic

    I was in New Haven recently with my kids and we spotted the encampment. I said, “C’mon, this is a learning opportunity.” We walked over and did our own census, going from tent to tent, counting the bodies. I would say there were close to 100 tents (and one teepee). So how many would you say were “occupying” New Haven? Four. There were four people in the entire camp. Most of the tents were piled high with garbage. The was a Potemkin Village from the start. I have been to three other “occupys” and the story is the same. The media has given these pathetic, economically illiterate waste-abouts a huge megaphone, but they are the smallest imaginable fraction of the population. Meanwhile, close to one million people attended the big Tea Party rally in DC a year and a half ago and it barely got mentioned in the NYT. I didn’t have to explain anything to my kids – one look around and they understood everything.

  • ethanjrt

    Sorry… let me make sure I’ve got this straight. 4 Occupiers? I guess it’s a remote possibility – they could have been at a rally, and some of these guys also have day jobs; certainly they don’t just sit around all day waiting for a “census.” That said, I’ve visited several times and never seen the number that low; I also doubt that you poked your head inside every one of the “close to 100″ tents. Speaking of which, the “100″ figure is where you lost all of your credibility – there have been, at Occupy’s peak, a maximum of something like two dozen, and a quick search for the relevant photos and videos of the camp will confirm that.

    But I guess that sometimes we just see what we want to see. It does undermine your credibility, though, when your facts are all wrong.

  • basho

    I’ll bite, wise guy. Suppose there were 100 people (3-5 people per tent – VERY generous). That would mean 0.08% of the population of New Haven prevented the use of space meant for 123,300…

    WE ARE the 99.92%!

    • basho

      and if I may, this font is horrible for depicting numbers

  • Jess

    Just in time for Yale commencement–what coincidentally convenient timing!

    • wtf

      Well actually, the city was nice enough to let them stay that long. So it doesn’t really seem like a coincidence. Also, commencement is a month away, so it’s also in time for Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Halloween!

    • btcl

      And the Arts and Ideas festival, an actual event meant to benefit EVERYONE in New Haven. Talk about seeing what you want to see