Occupy Lawrence protester arrested after climbing onto Weaver’s roof
A man affiliated with the Occupy Lawrence group was arrested Saturday afternoon from atop the roof of Weaver’s Department Store, 901 Mass.
The man, whom police identified as 24-year-old Sean Maupin, spent somewhere between a half-hour and an hour chanting slogans while wearing a Guy Fawkes mask.
Police blocked traffic on Massachusetts Street from 10th to Ninth streets before officers in a ladder vehicle arrested the man on the roof and brought him down and into custody.
Maupin was booked into the Douglas County Jail shortly after 1 p.m. on charges of criminal trespassing.
Sgt. Ted Bordman later said that Maupin would also be charged with misdemeanor theft and criminal damage of property. Bordman said that police had found a large vinyl banner belonging to a local apartment complex on the Weaver’s roof that police believed Maupin stole and spray-painted with a political slogan.
A large crowd of downtown passersby gathered at the intersection during the time Maupin was on the roof to “watch the spectacle,” as one man said to his young son.
Maupin was no longer in custody as of late Saturday afternoon, according to online records. Occupy Lawrence members said at their daily meeting in South Park that a representative paid Maupin’s $100 bail.
Present at the meeting, Maupin said that he did not want to be interviewed but read the assembly a draft of a statement that he said he would later send to the Lawrence Journal-World. When asked if he felt using public resources was effective for his cause, he said, “that’s what protesting is — civil disobedience.”
Jason Phoenix, who has served as a media representative for the group for several weeks, said that many, if not all, of those affiliated did not know of Maupin’s plans to scale the building ahead of time.
“Sean was making an action on his own,” he said.
Maupin said his arraignment was scheduled for Nov. 22.