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Updated Dec 1, 2011 - 12:15 pm

Protesters arrested, pepper sprayed at Westin Kierland

PHOENIX -- Community members and organizations protested Wednesday against groups of conservative lawmakers in Scottsdale with multiple people arrested and pepper sprayed.

Many protesters and police officers were at the protest around Noon on Wednesday.

One protester spoke about why he was joining in on the protest.

"I would just say that anyone out there who is against corporate greed, and who wants to see this "one percent" that you've been hearing about across this country to come out here in Scottsdale to see the corporations and the politicians coming together to draft these laws," Alex Soto said. "And not just laws, but overall policies that are making the rich get richer and not allow everybody else not be a part of the simple human right to just be who we are."

A total of six arrests have been made -- including one for assaulting an officer.

One person with the movement doesn't believe the use of pepper spray was needed.

"A member of the Tohono O'odham Indian Tribe who was pepper sprayed was denied medical treatment," Diane D'Angelo, a media volunteer with Occupy Phoenix, said. "There is no reason to be pepper spraying American citizens who are trying to exercise their first amendment right.

"I think it is pretty typical of what happens to people who don't have money, or access to power in this country at present. You get turned away, arrested or pepper sprayed. Of course it was excessive."

Various organizations ranging from labor to civil rights groups were there to protest against the American Legislative Exchange Council's States and Nation Summit.

The protesters accuse ALEC of being a massive nonprofit body that brings corporations and legislators together to draft ``model'' legislation like Arizona's SB 1070.

The ALEC Website says legislators from all 50 states are meeting over three days to discuss free-market solutions to create jobs, improve education and jump-start the American economy.

PHOTOS: Protesters at Westin Kierland in Phoenix

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.


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