The demonstrators in Denver held a peace vigil in the evening. It followed a melee on Saturday night that was one of the most intense clashes with the police since the protest groups began gathering in a downtown park more than a month ago. On Saturday, officers used pepper spray on the protesters, some of whom surged toward police lines. Two people were charged with assaulting an officer. In Nashville, where state law enforcement officials arrested 29 people on Saturday, the issue was a curfew imposed last week that barred protesters from inhabiting a downtown plaza near the State Capitol. The legality of the curfew has been questioned, and a magistrate judge immediately released the protesters, who had been charged with trespassing, saying that the state had no authority to create such a restriction. The Tennessee Highway Patrol, the law enforcement agency that made the arrests, issued a statement on Sunday saying that “the curfew remains in effect.” The highway patrol said the restriction was intended to help ensure the safety of the protesters, and it urged the protesters to “adhere to the conditions of the policy.” “The goal remains the same,” the statement said, “and that is to provide for the safety and security of everyone on the plaza.” The A.C.L.U. of Tennessee said it planned to file a lawsuit challenging the curfew at the downtown plaza, a spokesperson for the group told The Tennessean newspaper. On Saturday, for the third consecutive night, dozens of demonstrators defied the curfew uggs on sale
and inhabited the site, chanting and waving signs and huddling for warmth in the 40-degree weather. The police made no new arrests overnight. In Denver, most of the arrests on Saturday were over a police rule prohibiting structures, including tents, from being erected in public parks. Some accounts said that tensions escalated when the protesters climbed the State Capitol’s steps during a march by as many as 2,000 people. No public demonstrations are allowed on the steps without a permit. But a media liaison with Occupy Denver, Jeannie Hartley, said on Sunday that the protesters had never made it to the steps, which were blocked off. Most of the 20 arrests, a police spokesman said, were made when officers moved to keep people from erecting tents across the street from the Capitol at Civic Center Park. Several videos showed the police using pepper spray. Two protesters were arrested and charged ugg boots
with felony assault on a police officer after officials said he was knocked off his motorcycle, and other officers were kicked, said the spokesman, Lt. Matt Murray. Lieutenant Murray said that the police requested reinforcements after the officer was knocked off his motorcycle and that the enlarged force then moved into the park where most of the arrests were made. One video posted on the Occupy Denver Facebook page also clearly showed tension and conflict within the protesters’ ranks. At one point, a man, shouting in anger, is seen being pushed from the crowd to confront the officers, who are lined up with shields and batons. “I will fight back!” he screamed as other protesters pulled him back. One demonstrator, who had pushed to the front, confronted the man: “We are nonviolent — do not instigate that!” “They hit me!” the first man shouted. “Yeah, and they’re going to keep hitting you!” the other said. “They don’t have a right!” In Portland, Ore., about 30 demonstrators were arrested early Sunday after they refused to leave a park after a midnight curfew, according to The Associated Press. The police pulled vans up to a group of demonstrators sitting in a circle at the park, Jamison Square, and began arresting them one by one. An Associated Press photographer said most of the protesters went limp, and police carried or dragged them away. No violence was reported during the 90 minutes of arrests. The protesters — all of whom appeared to be in their 20s and 30s — were handcuffed before they were driven off. One continued to chant, “We are the 99 percent.” The crowd thinned out about 3:30 a.m. as the last arrests were made.