Arrested Protesters Say NYPD Officers Cravenly Ate Their Pizzas [Updated]

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NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 01:  AIDS protesters lie down in the street after marching up Broadway from Zuccotti Park on World AIDS Day on December 1, 2011 in New York City. About a half-dozen protesters, part of a larger group of over 100, were arrested after refusing to move while calling for Mayor Michael Bloomberg and members of Congress to tax Wall Street trade to raise money for AIDS treatment.  (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Eight protesters arrested for demonstrating yesterday while dressed as Robin Hood are claiming that the pizzas and drinks sent to them in jail by their legal support team were scarfed down by unapologetic members of New York's Finest. "We could see the empty pizza boxes in the trash, and the empty plastic bottles," said one of the arrested, Housing Works CEO Charles King, who was part of the action demanding taxes to fund AIDS research in honor of World AIDS Day. David Thorpe, another of the protesters, told Daily Intel that the group, three of whom were released around 9 a.m. this morning, have dubbed themselves the "Pizza 8, because they ate our eight slices of pizza."

Thorpe said the group was denied food and drink entirely for the twenty-plus hours they were detained, and that the cops drank the soda sent along, too, before telling the protesters that the vending machine was all out. (This isn't the first time the NYPD has been charged with helping themselves to pizza not meant for them.)

"We confronted the officers at the precinct about stealing the pizzas and they just smiled and laughed at us and didn’t deny it," said King in a lighthearted, but still semi-outraged press release. Eventually, the cops offered to replace the pizzas, but the activists said "no thanks". "We weren’t touching their dirty pizza," King said.

Although five of the Robin Hoods remain detained, Thorpe, who was charged with disorderly conduct and obstructing government administration, told Intel he ran to the deli first thing this morning for an everything bagel with lox cream cheese, tomato, onion, salt, and pepper. "And it was fucking delicious."

Update: "Any way you slice it, it was an honest mistake," said NYPD spokesman Paul Browne, like some kind of wiseguy. Browne said the cops thought the pizzas were for them, and added, "prisoner meals must be provided by the department itself." That explanation is "laughable," according to Thorpe. "They were smug about having pulled a joke on the activists," he said. "They can say they're sorry now, but their actions at the time say something else."