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Local News

Occupy Santa Barbara Protesters Branch Out with March on Banks

Several hundred demonstrators shut down street traffic, make a noisy case for protest's causes

Several hundred protesters made their way along State Street on Saturday as Occupy Santa Barbara shut down street traffic to protest outside some of downtown Santa Barbara’s biggest banks.

Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Chase Bank were among the stops, and chants like “Hey, hey, ho, ho, corporate greed has got to go” rang out as branch managers locked their front doors to keep the protesters out.

Saturday’s march capped off a week of protests that began Monday in De La Guerra Plaza as part of a larger movement billing itself as Occupy Wall Street.

Demonstrations like Santa Barbara’s have spread across the country as participants protest a range of issues, among them financial regulations, corporate money, business lobbying and risky banking practices.

On Tuesday, eight protesters were arrested in De la Guerra Plaza for being in the park past the 10 p.m. curfew.

Robert Villegas was one of those arrested Tuesday, and he was back out on the streets Saturday to keep the demonstrations going.

“I’m here because I want to see some real change,” he said. “This movement affects every single person in this crowd.”

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk or @NoozhawkNews. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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