PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 14 (UPI) -- Twenty-six Occupy Philadelphia protesters are suing the city, alleging their rights were violated when police dismantled their camp and arrested them in 2011.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court, charges their arrests on Nov. 30, 2011, were without probable cause because they were later cleared of charges against them, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported Thursday.
The protesters were acquitted in April 2012 of charges of failure to disperse, obstructing the highway and criminal conspiracy.
Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey, Deputy Police Commissioner Kevin Bethel and Capt. William V. Fisher are named as defendants, as well as six specific police officers and up to 25 unidentified officers on the scene at the time of the arrests.
The nature or amount of compensatory and punitive damages sought is not specified. The suit also asks for injunctive relief for the city's handling of the demonstrators.
The Occupy protest in Philadelphia began October 2011 when demonstrators set up a camp in Dilworth Plaza across from city hall. City workers began clearing the encampment on Nov. 30, 2011, after giving the occupants several days notice the area would be cleared for a $50 million reconstruction project.
Some 50 protesters were arrested as they marched down a city street while police tore down the camp.