Denver Says Occupy Protests Cost $430K In Overtime

DENVER (CBS4) – New numbers released Monday show the skyrocketing cost of the Occupy Denver movement.

The mayor’s office said the city spent about $430,000 in overtime and materials. The tally covers the costs from early October through Nov. 13. The money was used for police patrols along with cleaning up. The city expects to be able to cover the costs within its existing budget, according to The Associated Press.

Last week the Colorado State Patrol said it has spent more than $351,000 watching over the protests. That’s a total of nearly $800,000.

Though at times it has been heated there have been fears of much worse. Police reported finding in “backpacks, guns, knives and homemade weapons.”

On Oct. 14, the night riot-equipped officers moved in to tear down tents, there were threats to bomb police and to bomb the city jail. That night officers also say they discovered Occupy Denver protesters had spliced into the city electrical supply.

On Oct. 29 there was trouble again. Police were armed with foggers, gas grenades and blast balls. Mike Miller was there.

“They were totally too ready to beat somebody’s behind, to put it bluntly,” Miller said.

Police reported protesters resisting arrest and assaulting officers. Pepper spray was used but police also received a call from a demonstrator warning that parties were “tying ropes between trees and tents in an attempt to trip officers.”

Sarah Fong was identified in city emails as an Occupy Denver organizer and she questions the report.

“There have been a lot of talks about infiltrators among various groups of people within Occupy, but to the best of my knowledge it’s all been paranoid,” Fong said.

The cooperation between some Occupy Denver demonstrators and officers attempted to go further. A confidential meeting was arranged between Occupy Denver leadership and Mayor Michael Hancock.

On Monday the protesters occupied both sides of Broadway between Colfax and 14th, but so too were the police.

City attorney Doug Friednash issued a statement to CBS4 saying Denver has done an excellent job of striking an appropriate balance between protecting First Amendment rights and ensuring the public’s health and safety.

A lawsuit has been filed in Denver federal court against the city on behalf of the protesters. Because of that, the city attorney said he cannot comment at this time.

  • Hickenlooper = FAIL

    Not only are these trashpots a waste of money they are also a waste of space time and energy.

    Congrats tax payers of Denver you continually pay for these idiots while they commit a whole slew of crimes from drug dealing to assault on police officers.

    They are all just a bunch of class warfare tools created by thier idiot leader hussein obam. Yes hussein obama supports these crackheads and has admitted to it several times.

    Hickenlooper has failed the citizens of Denver and continues to each day these losers remain.

  • Linda Rockhold

    This is ridiculous. Now the city and the governor are trying to make the Occupy protestors look bad by citing the cost of police….really, it has been a peaceful group from the start, until the police got carried away.
    Shooting a guy in a tree who was not happy at having his tent ripped up? Shooting a tear gas canister point-blank at the head of a marine?
    The protestors are TRYING to assemble peacefully, and there is no need for any police to be there, except maybe just a few, if that would make the governor feel better. Oh, I suppose this is entirely an expression of Hickelooper’s frustration at not being able to whisk away something that is growing and growing.
    Occupy is protesting the elected officials who are in bed with big corporations and the banks that took the bail-out money, blew it and did not use it to help Americans.
    Is that you, Hickenlooper?
    Occupy is protesting the loss of pension money, INCLUDING policemen!
    Occupy is protesting the corporations that are destroying habitat and countless places on this planet to get cheap materials to make cheap products to sell us….and unhealthy products at that!
    The corporations and banks have this country, and many others in a strangle-hold and people are sick of it!
    This is a world-wide protest, and the issues are valid.

    • Ed Schneider

      Linda, I believe we have come to a head in our country with the way things are going. But, I think Hickenlooper has done an amazing job as governor compared to other governors.

      I must also impress that the Occupy protests have not made it clear what they are doing. You seem to have a greater interest in attacking the 1%. When the protests make valid and fact backed accusations, I may be inclined to support them.

      The city and the governor are not making the Occupy protestors look bad, they are advising the general public what they already knew was coming. Not to mention, We have not been informed of the two scenarios you mentioned in the start of your post.

      Again, I am really over this Occupy protest as is much of the 99%. Don’t claim the issues are valid until you can provide direct cites to the issues, not generalized accusations.

  • Drake Steele

    Money well spent, at least its going to the police officers in the form of overtime and not in the politicians’ pockets. The overtime the officers are receiving goes back into the community in the form of dinners, presents, and entertainment. What has the government done to stimulate the economy. Remember the police officers are part of the 99% as well, glad they are receiving their best paychecks of the year.

  • CRI Investigator

    Ed Schneider

    You are clueless. Please move along and let the people who arent sheeple discuss this.

    Hickenlooper? lol Are you serious? Watch how much money he ends up costing you over his incompetence. Newr Gingrich leading the polls show me just what a bunch of idiots you people are. baaaaaa, baaaaaaa

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