"Occupy San Diego" protesters who were arrested in an early morning raid in late October were detained for hours and forced to urinate and defecate in buses.
The San Diego Sheriff's Department confirmed yesterday complaints from protesters who said that after the arrests, while being held for hours in county vans and buses that they were told to relieve themselves in the bus.
From the official statement via:
"On October 28th between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. the Sheriff’s department provided a bus and two vans for prisoners arrested at the Civic Center by the San Diego Police Department. During that time 51 individuals were taken into custody, 36 men and 14 women. The men were placed in a Sheriff’s bus and the women were put in Sheriff’s vans to be transported to the Vista Jail and Los Colinas Detention Facility for booking."
"During that time there were no restroom facilities available for arrestees, forcing some of them to relieve themselves as they sat on the bus or van. For the Sheriff’s Department to provide mutual aid in this kind of mass arrest circumstance is not unusual; this unfortunate result is very unusual and it is currently being reviewed. The Sheriff has directed that a Critical Incident Review be conducted internally. Also, the Sheriff’s Department and the Police Department will conduct a mutual debrief to examine in detail how the operation was handled. From those reviews we will determine how to improve our practices to assure that this does not happen again."
Those arrested described being detained for between four and eight hours on a bus (men) and van (women) without access to restrooms. Male and female detainees stated that deputies told them to relieve themselves in the bus, which they did, with one woman defecating.
"The driving factor," which led to the raid, was said to be unsanitary conditions in the park.
Another interesting item to note from the October arrests: Of 877 emails and phone calls to the San Diego mayor's office, 90 percent said that they support the Occupy San Diego movement.
One of those emails was from the owner of a coffee shop who complained of "rampant drug use, sex out in the open, pit bulls, an abundance of knives, rats and bug infestations and “people lying in their own filth.”
That same coffee shop owner wrote a similar letter in 2008 regarding homeless people having the nerve to be seen in the area.