NATO protester arrests

05/23/2012 10:00 PM

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While the Chicago Police department reported 90 arrests resulting from the protests surrounding the NATO Summit meeting last weekend, relatively few were handled at the First District Police headquarters at 18th and State streets.

Chicago Police department spokesman Mike Sullivan said eight police officers were injured working during the NATO protests last weekend. He said he didn’t know how many protesters were injured.

Sullivan said most of those arrested during the demonstrations in the South Loop were taken to the 19th District police station at Belmont and Western avenues, which he said was designated facility for processing protesters who were arrested. He couldn’t explain why some were processed at the First District station at 18th and State.

Among those processed at the First District were Raziel Azuara, 24, of the 2400 block of West 45th Street, who was charged with aggravated battery after he allegedly threw a light bulb containing red paint at a police officer at 6:45 p.m. Sunday, May 20, during a protest demonstration in the 2200 block of South Michigan Avenue. The “paint container,” police said, struck an officer in the head and Azuara was apprehended after being identified in a video feed of the event which was then transmitted to officers on the ground, so to speak, by police radio.

Police also reported that two officers were injured at 5:30 p.m. Sunday May 20 in the 100 block of East Cermak Avenue and were sent for treatment to the Chicago Fire Academy at Taylor and Jefferson streets after a protester used the jagged edge of a smashed bottle to slash one officer. When another officer came to assist him he suffered lacerations to his right hand when he was struck by a blunt object.

Another three officers suffered bruises when they fell to the ground and were struck by unknown offenders at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 19 at 58 N. State St. Police said the offenders “were engaged in protest activities and civil disobedience” and were instructed by police officers to form into a line, when a group of protesters pushed themselves into the officers, shoving them to the ground, where some of the officers were attacked before the offenders fled.

Police arrested Christopher W. French, 21, of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, and charged him with aggravated battery after he allegedly interfered with the arrest of a man who had attacked a mounted police officer on a bicycle at 8:45 p.m. Sunday, May 20, in the 400 block of South Wabash Avenue. Police said the officer who was attacked suffered a cut wrist, scrapes to both knees and hand lacerations. The initial offender escaped, police said, when French interfered with his arrest.

Police also arrested John B. Scrader, of New York City, and charged him with aggravated battery for throwing bottles at police at 2:50 p.m. Sunday, May 20,in the 200 block of South Wabash Ave.

Cesar Montes, 20, of the first block of Kingery Quarter in Willowbrook, was charged with a weapons violation at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, May 20, in the 300 block of North Lake Shore Drive, after police monitoring the NATO demonstrations allegedly observed him with a set of nunchucks, a martial arts weapon that consists of two sticks connected at one end by a short chain.

This summary contains information taken from the crime reports and arrest records of the 1st District of the Chicago Police Department. Anyone named has only been charged with a crime. The cases have not yet been adjudicated.

—Compiled by Mike Ulreich

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