Approximately 150 protesters who temporarily shut down the 980/880 freeway were arrested on an off-ramp this afternoon by Oakland police. The protesters were moved to the 980/880 off-ramp at the Jackson exit, where they sat on the ramp surrounded by dozens of police officers before being loaded onto a police bus around 6:30 pm. At that time, the southbound ramp remained closed but the northbound ramp had been re-opened and traffic was flowing on the freeway in both directions.
“We made over 150 arrests, and we are still processing,” said Oakland Police Department spokesman Officer Jeff Thomason.
The protest followed an otherwise peaceful rally at Oakland’s Frank Ogawa Plaza this afternoon, at which hundreds of students and teachers gathered to mark their opposition to state budget cuts that have resulted in teacher layoffs, staff furloughs, class reductions and supply shortages at schools throughout the state. “Ninety percent stayed peaceful,” said Thomason of the demonstrators. “A group broke away.”