Jun. 14th, 2008

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June 13th, 2008. Philadelphia Police descended upon the home of homeowners who have been questioning police tactics in Mayor Nutter's new "stop and frisk" program. 4 residents were arrested in their home at 17th Street and Ridge Avenue, and the police are in the process of sealing the building. The homeowners are being held at the police station, no charges have yet been filed.

Homeowners had been circulating petitions calling upon Mayor Nutter and Police Commissioner Ramsey to attend community meetings on the use of excessive force, surveillance cameras, and the new "stop and frisk" policy. The mayor and police chief have declined to attend these community forums, but instead have seized the home and possessions of those who question "Stop and Frisk," and are currently holding them in jail. While many civil liberties advocates and residents of affected neighborhoods have questioned the new police tactics, few imagined that simple criticism of a city policy could result in the seizure of one's home and subject residents to arrest.

See http://www.phillyimc.org/en/node/68912 for more info.
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Police Critics' House Seized
by Prometheus Radio | 06.14.2008

Homeowners were released from custody at 3am after being held without charges for up to 14 hours. They are being told they will no longer be able to access their property without violating a trespassing law.

June 14th 8:10 AM Philadelphia. Homeowners were released from custody after being held without charges for up to 14 hours early this morning. The 4 were taken into custody yesterday after police arrived at their door without a warrant demanding entry to the premises. Upon being refused entry without the proper paperwork they arrested the homeowners and forced entry to the premises. After arresting the homeowners the police proceeded to call the Department of Licenses and Inspections which found the property in violation of various codes and permits and ordered the building cleaned and sealed. Homeowners were told they will have 1 hour at ten am to retrieve personal belongings before their home is sealed. Officials claim that the homeowners will no longer be able to access their property without violating a trespassing law. Police cruisers sat watch in front of the property all night long. Homeowners were released at 3:30 in the morning. Representatives of the homeowners will be present to make a statement while they retrieve some of their possessions. The police operation was led by 9th district Commanding Officer, Captain Wilson.

There will be a press conference and community meeting on Monday night, 6pm, at the playground at 19th street and Wiley.

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