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Spring Riot at U Sparks New Questions about 2008 RNC Protest

Category: RNC
Posted: 04/26/09 12:49, Edited: 04/26/09 12:50

by Ross Rowley

So the Minnesota Daily as well as Esme Murphy on WCCO are reporting a "Spring Jam Party Riot" last night at the University of Minnesota in Dinkytown. Apparently hundreds of drunken college students were involved. According to news reports, the police responded in riot gear and in force to a bonfire party in the middle of the street. Police fired chemical weapons and rubber bullets into the crowd and into houses, in all probability part of the arsenal left over from the RNC last September. The students threw rocks and glass bottles back at the police. At least seven students were arrested.

How much property damage resulted from last night's spring student "riot"?! Did the damage equal the statutory minimum of one thousand dollars' worth? If that's the case, will the rioters be charged under " Minnesota 's Patriot Act" with "furtherance of terrorism"? Will these college students be also charged with felony assault and threatened with prison sentences of 10 to 15 years?

Who will pay the damages after lawsuits are filed for injuries suffered by students and bystanders hit by police canisters and rubber bullets and from property owners whose homes may have been damaged. Did the Mayor in this case not have the foresight to obtain insurance?

Reflecting back to the RNC, we were told by Ramsey County Sheriff Fletcher that "dangerous anarchists" (not ?real college students?) controlled the streets for 2 1/2 hours during the opening hours of the RNC. How many fires did the RNC protesters set? How many rocks and bottles did they throw? How does the property damage at the RNC compare with last night's?

Certainly the authors of the ?Heffelfinger-Luger Commission? did not even attempt to answer the questions of how much damage actually occurred at the RNC. Will the media in the Twin Cities do its job to finally answer some of these hard questions?
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