NYC to Pay $333K For Pepper-Spraying Occupyers

NEW YORK (AP) -

The city has agreed to pay a total of $332,500 to six Occupy Wall Street protesters who said police unjustly blasted them with pepper spray in an episode that helped propel the movement into the spotlight.

The settlements range from $52,500 to $60,000 per person in cases arising from Occupy’s early days in September 2011. They’re among a number of payouts the city has OK’d over its handling of the protests while fighting some other claims.

The cases stemmed from a march a week after Occupy protesters first gathered and camped out in Lower Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park.

Videos showed Officer Anthony Bologna pepper-spraying a cluster of marchers, mostly women, who were corralled behind orange netting. The images helped galvanize Occupy.

Bologna’s union said he acted out of concern for safety and prevented more injuries and tumult. He wasn’t charged, but he was found to have violated police department guidelines and was docked 10 vacation days.