Several hundred Occupy SF protesters are marching through downtown San Francisco on Wednesday afternoon to protest cuts to public education.
Click on the photo to the right to see more pictures of the protesters at the bank.
The march, however, became disruptive after protesters stormed a Bank of America branch and refused to leave, leading to the arrest of demonstrators.
At about 2:15 p.m., at least 100 protesters rushed into a Bank of America branch on California Street near Davis Street, taking it over. They stood inside the branch chanting, “We are the 99 percent.” Some also pitched tents inside of the building.
At about 2:40 p.m., police ordered the protesters, some of whom had been standing on desks in the bank, to disperse.
Dozens of police officers stood outside the branch, and riot police arrived to secure the building.
Police scuffled with protesters, shoving them out of the way to access the building's doorway. Some people had been trying to exit the bank and others were blocking the officers' path as they tried to enter.
Another group of protesters left from outside of the bank and were headed toward Civic Center, but dozens of them remained inside as of 3 p.m. and had erected a tent in the middle of the floor. Some wore bandanas and some stood on desks.
Shortly before 4 p.m., police began arresting the protesters who remained inside.
The “ReFund Public Education March” was organized in part to protest the cancellation of the UC Board of Regents meeting in San Francisco this week.
The meeting was canceled because of fears that violent protests would occur, according to the regents.
“The 1 percent on the Board of Regents cancelled their meeting because we demanded they do the people's business,” read a statement posted on the Occupy SF website about the march.
“So now we're going to where they do Wall Street's business,” the statement read.
The site states that there would be a noon gathering at Justin Herman Plaza and a 1 p.m. march on banks, followed by a 4 p.m. “People's Assembly for Public Education” at the State Building at 455 Golden Gate Ave.
Around 1:30 p.m., the protesters sat down on Battery Street between Pacific Avenue and Broadway, blocking traffic.
Some protesters chanted, “Education must be free. No cuts, no peace.”
Examiner Staff Writer Andrea Koskey contributed to this report.