New Contender for Best 'Occupy' Photo

Female protester in Oregon takes pepper spray in the face
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 18, 2011 6:29 PM CST
Police Pepper Spray Occupy Portland Protester Elizabeth Nichols
A police officer uses pepper spray on Occupy Portland protester Elizabeth Nichols Thursday.   (AP Photo/The Oregonian, Randy L. Rasmussen)

When an 84-year-old woman got pepper-sprayed in the face at Occupy Seattle, it seemed like an easy winner for "iconic" Occupy photo. Not so fast: Photographer Randy Rasmussen of the Portland Oregonian snapped an image yesterday of a young woman also taking a blast of pepper spray directly in the face, and it's become an Internet sensation. The LA Times thinks the Occupy Portland photo "is destined to become an enduring image of the national movement."

The protester in this case is 20-year-old Elizabeth Nichols, who promptly vomited and then got arrested on trespassing charges. The Atlantic has more background on her and on the photo itself, and KGW interviewed Nichols upon her release from jail. Photographer Rasmussen, meanwhile, explains how the photo came to be here. (Read more photograph stories.)

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