Two men have been arrested on charges of criminal mischief for allegedly throwing fake blood on the window of a Dallas Neiman Marcus store, causing an estimated $3,000 in damage.
Mathew Kirk Markovitch, 22, and Zechariah Thomas Vasquez, 19, the two men arrested, are believed to have been affiliated with Occupy Dallas, but reportedly left before Dallas Police broke up the encampment, and have possibly joined another Occupy group.
On Friday, the Dallas Observer reported:
Ginger Reeder, veep of corporate communications for Neimans, reminds us today: Every Friday after Thanksgiving, animal-rights activists pay a visit to Neimans locations across the country. This year was no different, except this time, in downtown Dallas, they were joined by members of OccupyNOW, who posted to their Facebook page this morning the heads-up that they were celebrating “National Buy Nothing Day with Animal Connections of Texas [by protesting] at Neiman Marcus for Fur Free Friday on behalf of the 5th grievance of OWS.”
A post at Occupy NOW’s Facebook page notes:
Friday, November 25th Animal Connection of Texas (A.C.T.) coordinated and hosted its annual march against the fur industry at Neiman Marcus with support from OccupyNow! Overall the event was considered a success in terms of outreach and turnout. A.C.T. Proudly takes full credit for the presence of nude activists. We have been advised …to reframe from making any comment on the direct action that may have taken place at the demonstration for legal reasons, but can assure the public that it was not an action taken on behalf of OccupyNow!, or Animal Connection of Texas, however we do endorse all actions taken by activists at our event.
Occupy Dallas noted on its Facebook page that the group does not endorse criminal acts:
Neiman Marcus reports the acts of vandalism committed by the OccupyNOW group to be upwards of $3,000. While some reporters, such as Robert Wilonsky with the Dallas Observer, have been kind enough to differentiate Occupy Dallas from the event, others in the media are choosing to take advantage of this incident to paint the Occupy movement as a group of radicals. Occupy Wall St, Occupy Together and …by relation, Occupy Dallas does not support or condone illegal acts of vandalizing or violence. A few members of the group have contacted us to say that they didn’t know that fake blood was going to be used and their group never voted on using it. Our supporters should not be afraid to continue joining us at our events as we promise to remain forever peaceful and determined to conduct ourselves in a civilized manner.
The Dallas Observer confirmed with police the two men were charged in connection with the incident, but police did not confirm the “Occupy” affiliation of either protester. Animal rights activists have also disavowed the act, and said “this was probably done in a moment of desperation” by Occupy protesters.
If you like this article, you can follow Joe on Twitter @jnewby1956, visit his Facebook page, or click the Subscribe button to receive email updates when a new article is published.