The collapsing structure is haunted by other strange characters too. An elderly Japanese woman silently walks around handing out cigarettes. A young man named Freedom Rider is stranger still. Wearing a giant, filthy hat with furry ear flaps, he cusses erratically, whispers to himself, and self-medicates with Advil PM. The group has already voted him out several times, but he keeps returning.

"They pretend to be all about democracy, but they exclude people," he says of his fellow occupiers. Unlike the others, Freedom Rider admits there are frequent fights and that some occupiers do, in fact, shit outside the building. "They're trying to get rid of me because I tell the truth."

Behind the carnival atmosphere at 540 NW Seventh St., there are also stories of Occupy Miami actually helping people.

Rodrigo Duque, AKA Señor Paz, has let dozens of Occupy Miami members squat at 540 NW Seventh St. in Overtown.
Jacob Katel
Rodrigo Duque, AKA Señor Paz, has let dozens of Occupy Miami members squat at 540 NW Seventh St. in Overtown.
Charane Odho has been living in the apartment complex for three years; she calls Paz "a slumlord."
Jacob Katel
Charane Odho has been living in the apartment complex for three years; she calls Paz "a slumlord."

Freddy Diaz lives in apartment 26. The stocky Puerto Rican is a refrigerator of a man with the powerful forearms and scarred hands of a lifelong cook. He had a house, restaurant, and family in Wisconsin, but last November — during the slow months — he headed to Miami in search of seasonal work. Soon after he arrived, he was robbed, left penniless on the streets. "They beat the hell out of me," he says.

Diaz stumbled onto the Metromover, riding in circles until an attendant told him to get off. He walked down the stairs and smack into Occupy Miami. After a few days in the camp, Diaz cooked a meal for his fellow squatters. "When Paz found out I could cook, he brought me here, gave me shampoo and soap," he says. Until the tent city was shut down, Diaz brought three meals a day to Government Center.

"That man has a good heart," he says of Paz.

Charane Odho is watching television in her tiny studio apartment when the ceiling begins to creak and sag. White powder snows down as the plaster bows under someone's weight. Odho races upstairs. In the doorway stands Leroy, a shirtless occupier with long, shaggy brown hair and a sheepish grin.

"I told you guys to stay the fuck out of here," Odho yells, her finger in his face. "No one goes in here!"

"Don't be a bitch," the 20-year-old shoots back, grabbing Odho's arm. "We're just trying to fix it up."

"Get your fucking hands off of me!" Odho screams and walks back downstairs. A minute later, Fernando Azcurra — Odho's boyfriend, who has six inches and 50 pounds on Leroy and a history of attacking people — arrives with a snow shovel in his hands.

The assault happens in an instant. The 35-year-old delivers a flying kick to the kid's stomach. Leroy shrivels up on the ground like a swatted fly. And the whole incident is caught on an occupier's camera. For a week and a half, tensions between Paz's rent-paying residents and his newly invited Occupy buddies have been simmering. Now they are in flames.

Peace City ain't so pacific after all. In fact, Señor Paz's urban paradise is going to hell in a handbasket. Cops have been called dozens of times, code violations are piling up on Paz, drug use is widespread, and Occupy Miami's most reliable members are abandoning Peace City amid accusations of theft and violence.

Odho says her problems with Paz began long before Occupy Miami, back when he was still Rodrigo Duque. "He's a slumlord," she says. "He was then and he is today. It's as simple as that."

When she moved into the apartment building in 2009, Odho says, she was recovering from kidney cancer, showing off a long ugly scar to prove it. A county program gave Paz thousands to help Odho move in on the condition that he renovate her apartment. But he refused to clean up the moldy bathroom or leaky ceiling, she says. "He stole that money."

Code enforcement records indeed show eight outstanding violations and six past violations dating back to when Paz's father bought the place. Odho now fears that the entire building will soon be condemned. Miami police have told her and her neighbors to put their rent into an escrow account until Paz allows them out of their leases. But Odho can't afford to lose her security deposit. "This is my home," she says. "Why should I have to move out?"

Paz disputes Odho's claims. "They say they are going to attack my pocket and bring me down," he says, laughing at the idea. "It's a cleansing process. We are getting rid of the nonpeaceful people. There are people here who are involved in dark businesses like prostitution and drugs. We are bringing them into the light."

Odho has, in fact, been convicted of misdemeanor prostitution; her neck tattoo reads, "Property of Sir John A. Acosta." And her boyfriend, Azcurra, has been convicted of selling marijuana and charged with crimes including burglary and battery.

But police records also show that Occupy Overtown is fomenting, not fighting, violence and crime. Cops have responded to the building 18 times in the month and a half since the occupiers arrived, compared to only a handful of times in the previous months. Ten of those were for "criminal mischief."

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102 comments
Stacey95962173
Stacey95962173

my best friend's aunt brought home $19599 last month. she been working on the laptop and got a $473700 condo. All she did was get fortunate and put into action the steps exposed on this link ...MakeCash10.com

Stacey95962173
Stacey95962173

my buddy's step-sister made $12239 a month ago. she is making cash on the internet and bought a $389000 home. All she did was get lucky and work up the information reported on this web site MakeCash10.comONLY

Dashark
Dashark

Occupy Mov. is Obama owned and operated by ACORN.Another huge Obama FAIL

Aria Anderson
Aria Anderson

Even though not everybody will agree, I have learn that everything is nothing but the mirror of our-self.With that said, I can only feel sorry for the writer of this story, since the only things he could see are negatives, he must have some deep issue inside of him.When I go there, I see happy kids involve with sign making, neighbor showing solidarity and a lot of good people working on making positive changes into the neighborhood and society.

PerryLuis21
PerryLuis21

My best friend's sister made $19668 the prior week. she has been making cash on the laptop and got a $424600 house. All she did was get fortunate and set to work the directions explained on this site

PerryLuis21
PerryLuis21

My best friend's sister made $19668 the prior week. she has been making cash on the laptop and got a $424600 house. All she did was get fortunate and set to work the directions explained on this site >>>> LazyCash1.com

Odel Gauri
Odel Gauri

Look for "Peace City" on youtube by mediafish...

the feeled
the feeled

This building needs to be condemned before someone dies in there. Don "Peace" is a nutcase who wants to live like a homeless with no responsibilities. Whining communists living in a capitalist society...occupy the crap you're sitting in somewhere else.

weaponartist
weaponartist

all the lonely people /// where do they all come from???

dario
dario

I don't think there is much new in this story: there are divisions in this movement, protesters are evicted from public grounds then, someone of means invites protesters to private property. This has happened in other places around the country. It's also no surprise that protesters are generally unruly, tend to sprawl their messages everywhere, experiment, and are not averse to illicit drugs. We should look at Occupy Miami's accomplishments and failures, then apply them to our own actions.

runrandrand
runrandrand

WHAT AN EXCITING AND JOYFUL TIME TO BE ALIVE! THE PEOPLE AND NEWS AND ECONOMY AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS----ALLLL DOIN' ABSOLUTELY NUTHIN'!!!!!

runrandrand
runrandrand

MIAMI TAXPAYERS AND WORKERS DESCEND INTO BLACK MARKETS AND DRUGS----JUST TO PAY THE BILLS---

let's dance
let's dance

Is he a legal resident of this country, or does his money make him the man?

let's dance
let's dance

This might be the reason his father sent him to america, to get rid of him knowing he is off the rocker. Make as many people as you can join you, is what the father may have told him, CRAZY.

Oskar Papo
Oskar Papo

well...Is Colombia , uneducated dumb ass

sarpedon1
sarpedon1

There is nothing worse than a brain-dead, middle-aged parasite, who thinks he's a philosopher. I have no doubt that what the Occupoops are leaving on the walls and sidewalks is more profound than anything coming out Paz's mouth.

I'm afraid I'd be suing Mr. Paz were I one of his tenants...

He needs to go back to Columbia and give them the benefit of his wisdom.

Floooob
Floooob

Wrong. It was a STUPID IDEA from the beginning.

Only a NAIVE POLLYANNA LIBTARD would think it was "beautiful".

Also, the "true revolutionists" in Egypt & Tunisia, etc. are a bunch of PRIMITIVE ISLAMIC FUNDAMENTALIST ASSHOLES.

EAT SHIT AND DIE, YOU NAIVE LIBTARD.

Floooob
Floooob

"My battle is for Peace City. And Peace City is people."

And people are STUPID.

Floooob
Floooob

"A teenager with an Afro the size of a beachball plays a didjeridoo over a Gorillaz tune blaring from a cell phone."

This is truly the most horrifying part of this article so far.

Floooob
Floooob

""This is a black eye on the Occupy movement," says Shannon Reaze,"

The ENTIRE "occupy movement" is a black eye on the "occupy movement", you stupid bitch.

Floooob
Floooob

"Where's the money?" he yells. "Somebody is pocketing the cash. There should be no corruption inside Occupy Miami. We are supposed to be for the people, not stealing from the people. Some of these people are becoming the 1 percent."

LOL, nauseatingly naive libtard! BWA HAW HAW

Floooob
Floooob

""There are points in time when I've wondered if I really need to be here, if it's worth it. But I'm not a quitter."

No, you are just a DEADBEAT DAD, a LEECH, and a LOSER.

Floooob
Floooob

"They stay up until 3 or 4 in the morning, sleep until noon, and get by on food donated by local churches."

OCCUFAIL LEECHES.

Floooob
Floooob

"This is a system," Steve says one morning, so hung-over that one eye is pasted half shut. "We bring more people and discuss ideas... Eventually, we'll have so many people that the police can't stop us."

AWESOME DUDE, COOL STORY BRO

Drink some more corporate booze and smoke some more corporate cigs in the meantime while you wait for the Glorious Revolution, dipshit.

Floooob
Floooob

"His girlfriend isn't in Peace City, he says, because she's detoxing from a heroin addiction. They have a baby girl, who's being raised by his parents. "

Like I wrote just a minute ago, STEREOTYPICAL OCCUFAIL LOSERS!

Filthy drug-addicted LEECHES who are TOO FUCKING STUPID to realize how HYPOCRITICAL they really are!

Floooob
Floooob

"it would come to represent the best of the movement."

No, it represents the stereotypical WORST of the "movement", a bunch of retarded drug-addicted losers leeching off of the wealthy.

OCCUFAIL LOL

Floooob
Floooob

Why do the occutard occufail hypocrites smoke corporate cigarettes like fucking chimneys?

Floooob
Floooob

"Later, he brought expensive solar panels to charge cell phones and laptops (at least, until the panels were stolen)"

LOL OCCUFAIL

Floooob
Floooob

"It deeply affected Rodrigo, who couldn't attend the funeral. Instead, he said goodbye to Juanita and their 2-year-old daughter Cielo."

= ILLEGAL ALIEN, DEADBEAT DAD.

Floooob
Floooob

"But immigration issues prevented Rodrigo from returning home to see his shaken father."

= Paz is an ILLEGAL ALIEN.

Floooob
Floooob

"Paz, though, says Peace City will change the world. "This is our Zion, our Jerusalem," he says. "It is the place of the righteous.""

What an ABSOLUTE DUMBFUCK DIPSHIT.

janinec
janinec

You see...this is just an example of human nature taking over. Leftists always have these grand ideas of utopia and they sound wonderful...but they NEVER take into consideration human nature and human behavior. That is why socialism and communism do NOT work. When you put human nature into the equation, it always self-destructs.

MayoYvette22
MayoYvette22

@Alberta ṁy claśśṁate'ś aunt Ṁakeś $76/ĥour on tĥe internet. Śĥe ĥaś been Witĥout Work for 9 ṁontĥś but laśt Ṁontĥ ĥer pay Waś $8817 juśt Working on tĥe internet for a feW ĥourś. Ŕeaď Ṁore ĥere ...LazyCash1.com

MayoYvette22
MayoYvette22

Ṁy buďďy'ś śtep-ṁotĥer Ṁakeś $82 every ĥour on tĥe coṁputer. Śĥe ĥaś been uneṁployeď for 9 Ṁontĥś but laśt Ṁontĥ ĥer cĥeck Waś $7938 juśt Working on tĥe coṁputer for a feW ĥourś. ĥere'ś tĥe śite to Ŕeaď Ṁore >> LazyCash1.com

ALBERTA
ALBERTA

@Ltdevon5 my classmate's ŝiŝteŕ-in-lāẁ bŕóught in $18411 lāst ẁeeḱ. ŝhe is māḱing an incóme on the cómputeŕ and móved in a $531900 cóndó. All she did was get fórtunāte and woŕḱ up the advice ŝhówn on thiŝ link..MakeCash2.com

Sparky5253
Sparky5253

Next up will be a hippie jam fest and drum circle!

Tell It Like It Is
Tell It Like It Is

Duque, aka Paz, is obviously off his rocker. In my partialy educated opinion, he is bipolar.

Skydvr77
Skydvr77

If they all just got jobs there would be nothing to write about...so keep up the good work we wouldn't want to stop paying for your welfare, childcare, section 8, food programs, and just generally having to pick up the tab of laziness. That's the america I know and the one these "protesters" love.

Ltdevon5
Ltdevon5

its the same as it always was - just a bunch of dirty hippies. At least they are in their own little sh*t-smeared corner now

tklo
tklo

@Dashark  you dumb

Phil Ünder
Phil Ünder

Was it really necessary for you to comment so many times? Especially when you spew infantile drivel?

Phil Ünder
Phil Ünder

Flooob, not that your username would lead me tho give you the benefit of the doubt but, are you capable of critical thought? .. Or is it safer to wade in monosyllabic bliss?

nanook5
nanook5

i actually miss when it was that simple.

 
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