Occupy L.A.: LAPD on tactical alert after midnight deadline passes
Deputy Chief Jose Perez confirmed the tactical alert, which means that officers currently on duty are held over until they are released and police do not respond to low-priority radio calls.
Hundreds of protesters and supporters gathered at the Occupy L.A. site on the lawn of City Hall on Monday morning after the midnight deadline to clear out had come and gone, but no arrestes had been made.
Just after midnight, a large crowd gathered at the intersection of Spring and First Street.
People held candles, beat on drums, waved signs and showed no signs of moving out of the street.
One man shouted "This ain't Mardi Gras," as he attempted to usher people out of the street. Moments earlier Cmdr. Andrew Smith with the LAPD would not give specifics about what tactics police would use to evict protestors but said notices or citations would not be handed out, but people would be arrested instead.
Activists and L.A. officials faced difficult choices over the next phase of the Occupy L.A. movement as the deadline passed.
On Sunday evening, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa reiterated an ultimatum that the city's tolerance of the eight-week occupation would end at midnight.
"While Occupy L.A. has brought needed attention to the economic disparities in our country, an encampment on City Hall grounds is simply not sustainable indefinitely," he said in a statement.
-- Joel Rubin and Nicole Santa Cruz at L.A. City Hall
Photo: Occupy L.A protesters take to the street near City Hall. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times