I know it's short notice, but I was unsure of how to reach the legal team. Anyway, we are having an action today that I am concerned will attract some negative police interactions and potential arrests, when Occupy the Department of Education occupies the steps of the Department of Education to hold our first general assembly on public education. As I'm sure you know, teacher arrests are somewhat riskier because not only are we subject to the usual judicial process, but we are also at risk of losing our teaching license and being terminated. If there's anyway to get n observer for today, we would be much obliged.
On Fri, Sep 23, 2011 at 2:11 PM, Marina Sitrin <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The legal working group has a few things to share.
Most important - as always - take care of one another
and have at least a buddy if not an affinity group.
The police have been brutal and have been unlawfully arresting people.
We definitely want to do things about this.
As a group. And individually.
We have some words of caution on how to proceed with civil rights
violation complaints - ESPECIALLY before a criminal trial has taken
Things you say before a criminal trial CAN be used in that trial. That
includes interviews and statements with the Civilian Complaint Review
This is not to say do not file a complaint - but any interview or
video done BEFORE your criminal proceedings have been completed could
be used against you.
There is time to file after your trial.
Similarly for Civil Lawsuits.
You must be finished your criminal trial first.
If you do not have a criminal trial, and you begin a civil suit, it is
not only your lawyer that deposes (takes your statement and interviews
you) but also the City (which means they can ask you all sorts of
things related to your case, like what you were doing, with whom,
when, etc etc.) As a part of the case you must answer questions deemed
As the legal team we are NOT telling anyone what to do - but we feel
very strongly that people know the ramifications and possible outcomes
of certain things.
This is not easy to explain in an email, so people should please call
the National Lawyers Guild with more questions, and/or if you are
represented by a lawyer that is not in the NLG, get clarification from
them on what you can be asked and when.
We - the legal team - believe that we should make decisions based on
our politics and principles - and then see if the law can work in
accordance with them.
The Liberty Plaza Legal Team
(We have been the ones standing in front of the GA for the past few
nights making the legal team announcements.)