11/09/2011 05:24 EST | Updated 01/09/2012 05:12 EST

Police Investigate Occupy Ottawa Needle Claim


Ottawa police are investigating after Occupy Ottawa protesters claimed a "biological hazard attack" where more than 400 new and used needles were allegedly found near their downtown Ottawa site.

The protesters released two videos to CBC Ottawa featuring needles, which they say were found along the Rideau Canal on the east side of their Confederation Park site.

A statement released by the Occupy Ottawa group accused attackers of scattering the needles in a "systematic way" overnight Tuesday stretching to the National Arts Centre.

They said they had notified police about the needles, which the group's safety members found near but not on the actual encampment site.

The National Arts Centre told CBC News two of its security guards found some needles just after midnight during a routine patrol. They disposed of them in a container in the security office.

Then the guards said Occupy Ottawa protesters came to the guards with a container of needles but had left when police arrived at the NAC.

Police have not confirmed needle find

Ottawa police confirmed they received two calls for service early Wednesday morning from Confederation Park, but would not confirm what was found or the reasons behind the calls.

RCMP said the issue is not their jurisdiction and Ottawa police was responsible for any actions that could be of a criminal nature.

"We regularly monitor the park for suspicious activity, and we have determined that this was a deliberate attack against the Occupation," said Occupy Ottawa's Mitchell Broughton in a statement.

Broughton said he was one of the protestors who found the needles at the park's entrance near Laurier Avenue.

"It would be absurd to consider this to be the result of massive drug use. This is clearly an attempt to discredit us," he added.

The City of Ottawa also said it had no idea about any needles when asked if they could pose a safety risk. Ottawa Public Health also was not notified about any health risk.

This comes as police forcibly tore down the Occupy London protest in London, Ont., Tuesday night.

The mayors of Vancouver and Victoria, B.C., as well as Quebec City have also told the protesters to leave their public sites.