Members of one of Occupy Wall Street’s offshoots, Occupy Our Homes, were arrested Monday and Tuesday demonstrating outside the headquarters of the Department of Justice in Washington.
According to Washington police the protesters attempted to enter the building.
About 100 protesters with groups called the Home Defenders League and Occupy Our Homes marched on the building about 2 p.m. Some set up tents on the lawn and sidewalk while others ran up to the building’s Constitution Avenue entrance.
According to D.C. police, 17 people were arrested. Ann C. Wilcox, an attorney who represents protesters, said several were tased during the scuffle. A D.C. police spokeswoman said D.C. police were not involved in the tasing. Federal law enforcement officials on the scene declined comment.
During the arrest tasers were used on protester Carmen Pittman who was arrested outside the Department of Justice.
Part of the reason for the protest at DOJ, according to activists, is to demonstrate strong opposition to comments Attorney General Eric Holder made regarding his inability to prosecute Wall Street banks due to the risks such a prosecution brings to the financial system. These statements were later characterized as Holder in effect saying some banks were Too Big To Jail and therefore corruption by Wall Street would continue indefinitely with the tacit sanction of the government.
Occupiers also cited the unjust fraudulent foreclosure settlement and continual foreclosures as grievances that led to the protest. The miniscule amount of money the banks paid is not only seen as comically inefficient at making victims whole but extremely ineffective in deterring future crimes. The banks escaped justice thanks to the Justice Department.
The Occupy Our Homes protest at DOJ is part of the Wall Street Accountability Week of Action.