The North Avenue bridge overlooking I-43 in Milwaukee, and the ramps to the bridge were closed Thursday afternoon, until about 7:00pm, after hundreds of protesters with the "Occupy" movement, took over the bridge, and then marched down the middle of city streets.
The protest, set up by Wisconsin Jobs Now, and MoveOn.org, was part of other protests in cities across the nation, and an opportunity to mark the two-month anniversary of the "Occupy" movement. Police say four individuals were arrested during the demonstrations.
Demonstrators set up tents on the bridge, and chanted in the street, protesting what they see as growing inequality. Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn ordered officers to redirect traffic. Flynn had some harsh words for the demonstrators during a live interview on FOX6 News, saying "they can freeze their butts off," and "if you're upset with the economy, go to Wall Street!"
"We're gonna direct traffic around here, and we are not gonna fulfill the martyrdom fantasies of people who insist on being arrested while they disrupt the lives of this neighborhood," Chief Flynn said during the protests.
Demonstrators were sent diving onto sidewalks and medians when a white van broke around barricades and barrelled around the crowd. The driver of the van was arrested.
Around 7:00pm, the protesters delcared the demonstration a victory, and marched down North Avenue with two dozen police officers in tow, halting traffic as they marched. They turned down Fourth Avenue, and onto Garfield, overtaking the street. The march ended at Mt. Zion Baptist Church.