Occupy Seattle targets Chase CEO speech after bank arrests

Occupy Seattle targets Chase CEO speech after bank arrests »Play Video
Occupy Seattle protesters rally on Capitol Hill after rallying at a Chase Bank branch.
SEATTLE - Several hundred Occupy Seattle demonstrators protested in the rain Wednesday night outside a hotel where a bank official was speaking - as tense police in riot gear surrounded them.

The protesters were demanding an apology from JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon for bank practices they say have caused hardship and suffering for Americans.

At least two people were arrested during the nighttime protest, witnesses said.

The protesters chanted in the rain outside the downtown Sheraton hotel where Dimon was speaking inside at a University of Washington Foster School of Business leadership celebration.

Occupy Seattle demonstrators say Dimon is an example of an overpaid executive responsible for foreclosures and questionable corporate behavior.

Some protesters reportedly were trying to force their way inside the hotel so they could speak directly with Dimon - but they were unsuccessful. And Dimon never came out to speak to them.

The rally and protest outside the Sheraton Hotel came a few hours after six Occupy Seattle protesters were arrested when they refused to leave a Chase Bank branch on Capitol Hill.

Witnesses said the earlier incident began around 2:15 p.m. when protesters marched from Seattle Central Community College and set up at the corner of East Thomas Street and Broadway in front of a Chase Bank branch.

Seattle police blocked the bank entrance - but a few managed to get inside. They were laying on their backs with their arms locked together, blocking customers from reaching tellers.

An Occupy Seattle press release sent later in the afternoon stated that their intent was to "interrupt business as usual" and promote their views on corporations and banks.

Six protesters who refused to leave were arrested. But when police tried to take them away, other protesters stormed the street - blocking police cars.

A confrontation ensued, and police spokesman Jeff Kappel says officers used pepper spray on the crowd when at least 10 officers were physically assaulted while putting the arrested protesters in a paddy wagon. Kappel says at least two officers suffered minor injuries.

Police eventually managed to regain control of the situation.