KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A man, who believes in the Occupy KC Movement, told NBC Action News drugs and prostitution drove him away from the camp.
Bill Shelton came home from Occupy KC Wednesday morning dirty and upset. Spending several nights sleeping outside explained why Shelton needed an immediate shower. However, it was what he discovered in the Occupy KC camp that disturbed him.
Shelton reported to NBC Action News that he could not stand another minute inside Occupy KC because of the drug and alcohol abuse and the crime he witnessed. He said he saw several instances of prostitution.
Shelton explained, "Allowing that to happen in front of children, and you can hear it going on in tents, you can hear it in the night and you can hear it in the daytime."
Tuesday night was the last straw for Shelton, who packed up his belongings Wednesday morning and called the cops.
He said, "I hope Mayor James shuts this current occupation down."
NBC Action News checked with Kansas City, Missouri Police who reported no arrest for drugs, crime or sex at the encampment. Though, police said have been receiving an increasing amount of complaints from the area as the population of the encampment grows.
Occupy KC organizers said there's no end date in mind for the movement. Jeff Johnson said, "This is not a protest, this is an occupation."
Johnson told NBC Action News the encampment has been battling the behavior of a transient homeless crowd. Occupiers welcome everyone into the camp. However, the substance abuse problems and radical behavior have come from a population not involved in the movement.
Occupier Tyler Crane was shocked when NBC Action News asked about the negative accusations. He said there is a zero tolerance policy for drugs inside the encampment. Crane said, "We've come to a consensus multiple times in our GA's (general assemblies) discussing this exact problem and we've all agreed that we don't want it here. We don't accept it. When it is obvious that it's going on, we come together as a group to address it."
In fact, Crane said several people have been asked to leave for not complying with community rules.
Occupy KC is part of a national movement against financial greed and corruption. The group’s website specifically says, “Occupy KC is a movement of citizens who have come together to reclaim our democracy from the 1 percent who have hijacked it. We will not allow this injustice to continue .”
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