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Video- US police raid Occupy LA camps, arrest hundreds

Police officers have dismantled the two-month-old Occupy Los Angeles encampment two days after an eviction deadline.

A crowd of several hundred people came to City Hall in an attempt to stop the raid but the Los Angeles Police Department came out in full force.

Officers swarmed the encampment and quickly split the park into several small sections.

An unlawful assembly was declared, paving the way for officers to begin arresting those who didn’t leave.

Police say about 200 people were arrested during the raid with minimal force and no injuries.

An estimated 14-hundred police officers took part in the operation. Police say it was health and safety issues that in part prompted the raid.

But the protesters doubted the claims made by police. They say LA mayor Antonio Villaragosa ordered the eviction because of pressure he was receiving from other cities that had already cracked down on Occupy camps.

Other protesters say Occupy L.A. was becoming too powerful. They say the city was threatened by the change that a people-led movement could bring.

Protesters say they were caught off guard by the swift tactics employed by officers.

But they insist that even if the camp at city hall no longer exists, the Occupy L.A. movement will remain strong.

Police crews will be working throughout the next day to clear the park of tents, structures, and waste.

Protesters say they are already meeting to discuss what the next phase will be for Occupy L.A.

Los Angeles police say they are prepared to take several steps to prevent protesters from re-occupying the camp outside Los Angeles city hall. That includes increasing officer patrols and possible building a fence around the park.

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