Former Occupy DC protesters found guilty


View Photo Gallery: Demonstrators have entrenched themselves in Freedom Plaza and McPherson Square downtown. Patience with the protests seems to be wearing thin for some officials, and the National Park Service director says Park Police will enforce the ban on camping in McPherson Square.

Eleven protesters from the now defunct Occupy D.C. camp in McPherson Square were found guilty of failure to obey an emergency order in D.C. Superior Court Thursday after they tried to build a wooden structure — the “Occubarn” — in the square in December, Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan’s office said Thursday.

Occupiers began building the wooden structure in the early morning hours of December 4, hoping to use it as a gathering space for their winter meetings. But when authorities demanded they remove the structure, a day-long standoff with U.S. Park Police ensued as the Occupiers clung to the wooden beams and refused to leave. Ultimately seven were arrested, three others either were removed from the “roof” or jumped to safety and another was forcibly removed.

Eleven of the defendants were found guilty of failure to obey an emergency order; one of those 11 was also found guilty of indecent exposure and disorderly conduct after he urinated from the roof. A 12th person was acquitted because of insufficient identification, the AG’s office said.

Three of the defendants had to pay a $100 fine plus $50 to a fund for victims of violent crime; others were ordered to pay $50 to the victims fund. The final protester who faced additional charges was told to pay a $150 fine, a $150 victim fund contribution and do 24 hours of community service.

Annie Gowen is The Post’s India bureau chief and has reported for the Post throughout South Asia and the Middle East.

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