Reprint from WASHINGTON (WUSA9)
A $2.2 million settlement has been reached over the 2002 arrest of nearly 400 people in D.C..
The arrests were made in Pershing Park on September 27th, 2002. Police encircled the park and arrested more than 400 people during a protest, including bystanders and tourists. Many of those arrested were held for 24 hours.
As part of the settlement, U.S. Park Police has agreed to significant changes to their arrest policies, the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) said in a statement on the settlement.
“The reforms in this settlement take aim at the recurrent problem of police, without proper warning and notice, suddenly rounding up, trapping and arresting demonstration groups,” PCJF’s Legal Director, Carl Messineo said.
The new policies include: prohibiting the use of police lines to encircle protesters, providing at least three warnings to disperse before arrests, and identifying ways for protesters who don’t want to be arrested to get out of the crowd.