Occupy Wall Street Returns To Zuccotti Park, Without Tents

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By Jeremy B. White | September 18, 2012 5:37 AM EST

A year ago, members of the new Occupy Wall Street movement descended on a previously obscure piece of land in Lower Manhattan whose name, Zuccotti Park, would soon become the epicenter of a national story.

The occupation ended two months later with a surprise nighttime raid by the New York City Police Department. Lawyers for the demonstrators rushed to reverse the eviction, but a federal judge upheld the right of the park's owner, Brookfield Properties, to prevent people from camping out.

This Time, No Tents Or Camping Supplies

Occupy Wall Street returned to Zuccotti Monday in a celebration of the movement's one-year anniversary. And while the occasion was replete with the drums, banners and heated political discussions that pervaded the space a year ago, it seemed unlikely that another occupation was imminent.

"They know better," said a Brookfield security guard stationed at the small entrance in the metal barricades encircling the park. He said no one had attempted to enter with camping supplies or tents.

There were a few notable visitors, though. A man dressed in a massive costume of the Batman villain Bane -- also a reference to 2012 Republican Party presidential nominee Mitt Romney's investment firm Bain Capital, which was emblazoned on the outfit's belt -- stalked the park. At one point, he clashed with a huge Statue of Liberty puppet. (Lady Liberty prevailed.) Signs urged the regulation of banks, the exit of money from politics and the end of the Federal Reserve

'Stop And Frisk' Policy Protested

Some elected officials made appearances as well. City Councilman Jumaane Williams, wearing a button expressing his opposition to the New York Police Department's stop-and-frisk policy alongside an Occupy Wall Street pin, made the rounds.

"I want to do what I can do as an elected official to make sure everyone's rights are protected," Williams said.

Also present was City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, who was for a time charged with resisting arrest after a scuffle broke out when he tried to get to Zuccotti during the police raid. (The charges were later dropped.)

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