Small group of Occupy Salt Lake protesters asked to leave

Published: Monday, Nov. 7 2011 9:00 p.m. MST

Occupy Salt Lake protesters gather in an empty lot next to the Wallace F. Bennett Federal Building in Salt Lake City on Monday, Nov. 7, 2011. Police have warned them that if they do not vacate by morning, they will be arrested. In blue is Heather Suker.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — Occupy Salt Lake protesters have been asked by Salt Lake police to vacate the private property on State Street where they've been camping since last weekend.

The grassy plot the small group is occupying is about a block away from the Federal Reserve branch and is the second camp set up in the city. A larger group of protesters has been occupying Pioneer Park for more than a month.

Protesters chose the lot at about 150 S. State when they couldn't get city-approved permits, said organizer Skylar Henderson.

"We found out that this was corporate wasted land," Henderson said. It's "wasted," he said, because the company that tore down the previous structure has yet to build anything worthwhile on it that would benefit the local economy.

The out-of-state land owner asked them to leave Monday afternoon.

"The owners of the land have sent a representative here and asked us to leave," said Henderson, a student at Salt Lake Community College.

Salt Lake police have asked them to vacate by Tuesday morning, but Henderson said they will stay put until they are able to get a city-approved permit allowing them to protest around the clock near the city's financial district. Not having an approved location downtown is what drove them to taking over the private property in the first place, he said.

E-mail: mfarmer@desnews.com Twitter: mollyfarmer

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