police halt code pink protesters at straz center
Police asked about a dozen Code Pink protesters Tuesday to leave the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts because they were trespassing on private property.
The protesters, wearing their usual attire in all shades of pink, stood at one of the entrances with signs that read, "Arrest Condi" and "Condi = war criminal."
Medea Benjamin, co-founder of Code Pink, said they were protesting against Condoleezza Rice, former secretary of state, because she agreed to send troops to Iraq. The protesters picked the Straz as their location because they thought Rice was scheduled Tuesday to speak there.
They held blankets with blotches of red paint, depicting blood, and waved handcuffs in the air.
But within minutes, dozens of police officers, on foot and on bicycles, arrived at the Straz. One officer approached Benjamin and asked her to leave. Several journalists swarmed around them with notepads and cameras.
Lorrin Shepard, the center's chief operating manager, also arrived and asked Benjamin and the others to leave.
They left the property.
— Laura C. Morel
Occupy Tampa free market draws few
There was no catch at Occupy Tampa's free market Tuesday afternoon.
It was free. Really free. Really.
The market opened at Voice of Freedom Park, 2101 W Main St., around noon and boasted boxes of books, clothes and household items. But there weren't too many people there to collect.
Many Occupiers had walked over to the Romneyville encampment to greet new arrivals from New York and other states. The encampment at Voice of Freedom Park was, instead, crawling with journalists.
"We're good, we're set, we've got everything we need," said one Occupier to a TV reporter.
Behind him, full buckets sat untouched.
— Marissa Lang
Coca-Cola recycle bins will stay
Coca-Cola has set up recycling bins for the Republican National Convention with a "Give it back" message.
Bins at the Tampa Convention Center include about 70 that are shaped like Coke bottles and 40 that once held 55 gallons of concentrated soda syrup. Recycling bins in the Tampa Bay Times Forum were replaced with the Coke bottle-style bins.
And after the RNC leaves, the bins will stay.
— Elisabeth Parker