Occupy Austin protesters were evicted from the steps of Austin's City Hall last night on orders from the office of City Manager Mark Ott. Seven arrests were made and one 58-year-old protester was hospitalized, says a report posted this afternoon on the Austin Chronicle web site.

Rumors of an eviction have swirled for days, the article says, but protesters were finally ordered to leave at 9:30 Friday night. At 10:45 p.m. a group of 50 police arrived by bus and began to clear the area.

Protesters reconvened at Republic Square Park and began to march up Sixth Street, webcasting the event until it became clear that police were using the webcast to track and surround the group.

Seven arrests were made in total, including videographer Corey Williams, 'Occupy Austin' organizers, and 58-year-old Claire Hirschkind who fell to the ground and was taken to Brackenridge Hospital. City officials say that Hirschkind has a history of seizures but witnesses say she was pushed down by police.

New regulations put in place by the City Manager prohibit any non-city usage of the area between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. and bar the use of "sleeping, camping and the use or storage of sleeping equipment." A reservation is now required by any group wishing to use the area's mezzanine and amphitheater.

Protesters who were arrested face charges of criminal trespass.

(Photo by Ann Harkness via Flickr Commons)