Just received a news release that twenty-four students and community members will file a lawsuit in United States District Court today.
They write it’s in response to brutality at the hands of UC Berkeley Police during the “Occupy Cal” protest on November 9. Video from that day went viral:
Thanks to video submitted by NeyazN via Tackable, we have the November 15th General Assembly at Cal where the crowd first heard today’s lawsuit was coming. You can hear the crowd pass the word along in what’s become the trademark echo amplification of the Occupy movement:
From the press release about the lawsuit:
The plaintiffs are represented by the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration, and Immigrant Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary (BAMN).
The defendants are UCB Chancellor Birgeneau, other senior UCB administrators, University of California Police Department Chief Mitchell Celaya, Alameda County Sheriff’s Office Chief Gregory Ahern, Oakland Police Department Chief Howard Jordan, and individually-named police officers.
BAMN welcomes more people who want to become plaintiffs in the lawsuit to join.
Meanwhile yesterday – anticipating the suit? – the UC Berkeley Police Officers’ Association released an open letter :
A video clip gone viral does not depict the full story or the facts leading up to an actual incident. Multiple dispersal requests were given in the days and hours before the tent removal operation. Not caught on most videos were scenes of protesters hitting, pushing, grabbing officers’ batons, fighting back with backpacks and skateboards.
The UC Berkeley Police Officers’ Association supports a full investigation of the events that took place on November 9th, as well as a full review of University policing policies. That being said, we do not abrogate responsibility for the events on November 9th.