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DA agrees to drop criminal charges against most protesters; some, however, insist on criminal trials

Most of the protesters arrested at Occupy Boston early this morning walked out of Boston Municipal Court today after paying $50 fines. However, eight protesters insisted on criminal trials, while 4 others will get criminal trials because of past criminal records, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office says.

The DA's office reached agreement with 49 protesters to drop criminal charges in exchange for $50 fines, which means they walked out of court with no criminal record. A judge dropped charges against an additional 14 protesters in exchange for a similar payment and over prosecutors' objections, the DA's office says.

This is the same procedure the DA's office used to resolve the arrests of 24 people at an unrelated protest against Bank of America last week.

However, Robert Birmingham, 22, of Dorchester, Philip Darnawsky, 34, of Cambridge, Julian Taylor Evans, 28, of Brookline, Kamal Ghammace-Nansour, 21, of Oakland, CA, Christopher Hickman, 23, of Haverhill, Anthony Morris, 24, of Dorchester, Theodore Rhodes Murphy, 18, of the Back Bay and Khury Peterson-Smith, 29, of Dorchester, decided to fight the charges in a criminal trial, the DA's office says.

Another four defendants will have to make their cases in a criminal trial because of their past criminal records, the DA's office says.

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Adding up all of your numbers I get 75, but weren't there more than 100 arrests?

Also, do you have the names of the four with prior criminal records?

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Ron, I don't believe everyone was arraigned today. I saw something on the news earlier that stated they weren't going to arraign everyone yet.

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Why are they trying to cost boston more money?

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The raid included SWAT, BPD, EMT, Public Works, Sanitation and State Police and it occurred at 1:20 AM after hours of planning and staging. A lot of people were making overtime.

There were enough officers there to surround an entire city block, shoulder to shoulder, and hundreds more to go into the park and make arrests.

At the same time, they left the Dewey Sq camp alone as they've done for over a week.

If they had let Occupy Boston expand, (and there was no objection from the Greenway Park Manager) they would not have had to spend the money on the bust.

What seems to have motivated the bust was earlier in the day when the protesters were blocked from crossing the Charlestown Bridge, some of the protesters tried to evade BPD and take the bridge. This is were Commissioner Davis first reference to 'anarchists' comes from. They were pissed about what happened at the bridge and it had nothing to do with 150,000 in landscaping. They also don't want it to grow. I think the bust was a huge tactical error but we'll see.

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And by justice, I mean a CORI entry. It's like one of those white oval stickers people put on their cars after a trip to Europe, except this one means I'm oppressed. OMG I can haz street cred!!!1!

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Stephen Campbell, 24, address unavailable, Rafael Antonio Feliciano, 23, of Mission Hill, Christopher Foye, 28, of Quincy, and John Perna, 36, of Worcester.

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I was at the court today for an unrelated matter, and the case I was involved with was fifth on the list... Until all of the Occupy Boston folks showed up. Took until 4pm to have the case heard...

Good use of my taxpayer money... NOT!

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Wait till the city gets the bill for defending against the inevitable ACLU lawsuit. We'll have to close a few more schools and libraries just to cover the "Corporation Counsel"'s overtime.

100 people arrested for peaceable assembly in a public area- isn't there something in the Constitution about that?

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Even though I strongly believe the arrests were retaliation ordered by Menino after protesters and union thugs exposed his two decades of negligence in maintaining the North Washington Street Bridge, still Boston Police handled the situation overnight in perfect, textbook fashion. This one, complete with police radio and video tapes, will be taught as a model for crowd control in academies and police command seminars for years to come. Speaking of video, among the worst things the agitators have done so far was to release video of the arrests which show police professionalism at its best, then claim widespread police brutality and future lawsuits. What?

Even far-left Emily Rooney on ch. 2 said tonight she saw no police brutality on video tapes submitted by Occupy Boston purporting to show widespread instances of it. The protestsers and their objective (whatever that is) lose credibility with false, bombastic claims against our police, not to mention allowing a bling adorned, $350 Givenchy shirt wearing Kanye West to pretend to be one of the 99%.

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"far-left Emily Rooney"???

I presume you turn off your hearing aid and just dub in whatever dialog you want to all around you to fit your narrative.

And of course, we wouldn't have you any other way! I♥U!

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@John-W, I didn't even need audio tonight as Emily Rooney had a fellow named Nadeem Mazen, an apparent spokesman for Occupy Boston, making claims of police brutality that not even Rooney would go for, and to "balance" things out, a reporter from that bastion of conservatism and police support, the Boston Phoenix.

It was akin to her show in the hours after the Professor Skippy Gates arrest in Cambridge when Emily had four African Americans and a white liberal civil rights attorney sharing wild anecdotes of police abuse, few if any pertinent to the situation. Remarkably one of them was a Globe columnist who had only recently been arrested by Transit Police for drunken driving in the Globe's car, eventually collapsing at the booking desk! Evidently Rodney King was unavailable to join the panel. All agreed that Gates was right and CPD was wrong as Rooney dutifully nodded approval. Of course this was before the massive backlash against Gates and his enablers that required Obama to call the "beer summit" in the Rose Garden.

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Aside from some elderly veteran getting tossed like a sack of potatoes, there didn't seem to be much vigorous arresting going on. Notable exception being the large legged woman scuffling all the way to her awaiting chariot. (all this being based on what I've seen on-line and heard from people present.)

Civil disobedience is a tactic. Usually there is something you're trying to achieve with that tactic. Balancing out what you have to win with what you have to lose is important. In this case I'm not sure it made strategic sense to resort to this tactic at this time. You may rally a few people to the cause but it can be putting off just as many people (especially if you use over the top rhetoric about police brutality that just isn't there).

The whole thing seemed a bit out of character from previous behavior. Does anyone know if this action was something that was discussed at the General Assembly? Was there consensus reached on this course of action? Or was it a case of some people who want to say that they were arrested?

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really? full trial? for a 50 dollar fine? Really.. they should be glad it was only that much.

I think the judge(s) will just dismiss the charges on the grounds that its going to waste tax payers time and money. These are minor offenses folks. Once again, the courts are clogged with REAL cases that need to be heard, and these buffoons, but no.. these clown want to clog up the court system for 50 dollar fines.

Fine, protest, but don't sit there and waste more tax dollars clogging up the courts when real cases need to be heard over a 50 dollar fine to make a point.

This just proves to me even more than these are a bunch of losers who really need to focus their energy elsewhere.

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If you don't want people clogging up the courts then don't arrest them. Arrest and release bullshit is harassment.

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Everything you said about wasting precious time, money, and resources could just as easily be said about Menino and the BPD. I bet a lot of people would have preferred to have those police patrolling the neighborhoods, and available to respond to real emergencies, not protecting flower beds with SWAT teams and batallions downtown. The choice was Menino's.

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Isn't it up to the cops, to, you know, not arrest them if they don't want to clog up the courts with misdemeanors going to trial?

They were arrested, rightly or wrongly, and deserve their day in court if they so choose.

Personally, I'm hoping they fight, win, cost the taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars and give Mumbles and Davis a big old black eye.

Maybe it'll light a fire under a the people of this city to wake up and realize that Boston is better than that, and that Menino is way past his time as a effective leader of a "world class city".

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your tantrum:

Personally, I'm hoping they fight, win, cost the taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars

If you resided in the city of Boston and paid our taxes, you'd be singing a different tune.

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