Three deaths have occurred in Occupy protest-related situations this week.

In Burlington, Vermont, a 35-year old military veteran committed suicide, while a Salt Lake City protester was found dead by unknown cause in his tent.

In Oakland, a man was shot in a fight nearby the protesters, but is supposedly not related to the cause.

The death in Burlington is raising concerns about the safety of the protests. Deputy Police Chief Andi Higbee said “Our responsibility is to keep the public safe. When there is a discharge of a firearm in a public place like this it’s good cause to be concerned, greatly concerned.” Whether or not the protests will be allowed to continue is still in the air.

Protesters in Salt Lake City are no longer permitted to camp out in the city park, and are required to remove their tents by Saturday. However, daytime protests will still be allowed.

Officials in Oakland are calling for the camp to be shut down. Despite leaders of the cause claiming that the shooting was unrelated, Mayor Jean Quan said “Tonight’s incident underscores the reason why the encampment must end. The risks are too great. We need to return (police) resources to addressing violence throughout the city. It’s time for the encampment to end. Camping is a tactic, not a solution.”

About The Author

Erin Farnsworth is a Blast intern

One Response

  1. Judith Meyer

    The headline “Occupy-related deaths in three states” is misleading. The shooting death that occurred in Downtown Oakland has not been connected to the demonstrators or their community by any reliable source. When crime occurs on Mission Hill do we call it “Harvard Medical School-related?” based on mere proximity?” We do not.

    Oakland, CA is one of the most violent communities in the US. The situation that exists there even merits its own Wikipedia article, “Crime in Oakland, California.” This Blast Magazine article, however, contains word choices (“supposedly not related… Despite leaders of the cause claiming that the shooting was unrelated”) that indicate the writer doesn’t want us to believe there’s no connection. Alternative, neutral, word choices (“said not be related…leaders of the cause saying the shooting was unrelated”) were available. Why not use them?

    Authorities in Oakland are claiming (see what my word choice indicates?) this shooting is related. You could make it clear that they are claiming this without taking sides. Or has the mayor and police force in Oakland earned so much national respect that Blast Magazine trusts them implicitly? Here is an example of an article that discusses the situation in Oakland without taking sides; in the future, Blast Magazine should strive for similar journalistic standards: .

    PS – The mayor of Oakland is “Jean Quan,” not “Jean Quad” as indicated in this Blast Magazine article.


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