I’ve noticed a conspiracy theory on Twitter going through random tweets using the #OccupyWallStreet hashtag, namely that the police steered the protesters onto the Brooklyn Bridge, where several hundred were arrested (most released immediately).

Now the conspiracy theory is being fed by The Village Voice which juxtaposes two articles from The NY Times, in which the reference to the police allowing the protesters onto the bridge was removed:

The above photo of juxtaposed screenshots from the New York Times website has been making the rounds on Facebook, and it shows two very different takes for the same story on yesterday’s Brooklyn Bridge arrests. The screenshot on the left, from 6:59 p.m., appears to reflect what many protesters are saying: The police tricked them into marching on the bridge.

The Voice goes on to note The Times’ explanation that the change simply reflected updated information which developed throughout the day.  The Voice also posts two videos of police warning protesters before they entered onto the bridge, which would tend to disprove the conspiracy.  But The Voice notes that questions remain:

While the NYPD videos certainly represent the “input from the police,” they may raise more questions than they answer. Animal New York‘s Bucky Turco tweeted that the second video above appears to be edited at the 29-second mark. How much was edited is unknown, but the footage certainly does jump.

Inconsistent accounts.  Possible evidence tampering.  A conspiracy so broad it reaches from Police Headquarters to the newsroom of The NY Times.

But don’t discount the possibility.  Makes sense that if you want to arrest several hundred people, it’s best to corral them into a confined place from which they cannot run, like a bridge.

This is deep.  Really deep.