Posts Tagged ‘#occupycal’

Police Lockdown the Gill Tract Farm Occupation

9 May 2012

ALBANY, California – On April 22nd, a few hundred demonstrators broke ground at the Gill Tract empty lot on San Pablo and Marin and established a guerrilla garden. The land owned by the University of California, Berkeley, was periodically used for agricultural research, but was otherwise untouched. Community activists have spent a decade in dialogue with the university to open the land to the public. However, talk of selling the land to build a strip mall on this high grade agricultural soil launched demonstrators into action. On the 22nd, demonstrators tilled the land, transplanted seedlings, established chicken coops, set up tents, organized events and workshops, and inspired the community to flourish.

Although support for the new community farm flooded in from neighbors and members of the University of California, administrators at the UC threatened eviction multiple times through the course of the next two weeks, and then last week they finally gave demonstrators an ultimatum. Around 7am on May 9th, the UCPD [locked the west gates and placed concrete barricades to prevent vehicular traffic].

Update:

8:00am – The UCPD told press that they are only restricting vehicular access, and that the East entrance is still accessible. (via Susie Cagle)

10 May, Thursday

Around noon, UCPD closed the last remaining pedestrian gate. However no arrests have been made as of Thursday night. Read more.

Read more:

Letter of Solidarity with the Davis Dozen from their UC Berkeley Counterparts

5 April 2012

from UC Chilling Effects:

Last week, 12 students and professors were notified by the Yolo County District Attorney that they were being charged in relation to the blockade of an on-campus bank at UC Davis.  Protesters had blockaded the branch of US Bank in opposition to its exploitation of students at Davis, and the banking industry’s profit-taking through increasing student debt and rising tuition in general.  The protests were successful in getting the bank to close its doors and void its contract with UC Davis. Now, almost a month after the protests ended, these 12 are being charged with over 20 misdemeanor counts related to the blockades, and the Yolo County DA has indicated it might seek damages of up to $1 million dollars on behalf of the bank.

As the recipients of a similar set of belated charges from the Alameda County DA, brought against us in relations to the events of November 9 at UC Berkeley, when students tried to set up a small “Occupy” encampment there and were viciously beaten by the police, we want to extend our solidarity to the 12 protesters charged. We condemn this opportunism on the behalf of UC Davis police and administration. They are clearly using the Yolo County DA to accomplish repression which they feel they are unable to undertake on their own, after the widespread public outrage at their behavior last fall, when sitting protesters were serially and vindictively pepper-sprayed.  That incident, captured on video and viewed millions of times the world over, became an international symbol of the brutality of US police.

In a talk given last year, UC Irvine Professor Rei Terada reflected on the fallout from the UC Berkeley and UC Davis incidents by predicting that, in the immediate future, campuses were not likely to resort to “the kind of violence you can photograph.” The developments at Davis and Berkeley have proven her remarks uncannily prescient. Afraid of public outrage and its endangerment of their jobs, UC administrators and police departments have farmed out the job of repressing students to local prosecutors. This allows the campus administrators to absolve themselves of any responsibility for the charges, claiming such matters entirely outside of their jurisdiction, even though in all of these cases charges could not have been brought without the active encouragement and collaboration of campus police. And so we see that, at Berkeley, Chancellor Birgeneau claims that he knew nothing about the charges filed against UC Berkeley protesters, even though his police department had forwarded to the DA specific recommendations to charge all 13 people. Either Birgeneau is not telling the truth or UC police acted, in this matter, without his oversight. Both are evidence of incompetence. At Davis, Chancellor Katehi, who nearly lost her job after the pepper-spray incident, instructed her police department to avoid confrontation and let protesters continuously blockade the US Bank branch for close to eight weeks, without ever arresting any of them. But, wanting to have it both ways, her police then forwarded the cases to the Yolo County DA.

The last year has seen a remarkable flourishing of protest and resistance in this country. Hundreds of thousands of people have had the opportunity to experiment with new tactics and ideas. But this has also been a time of experiment and innovation for police forces and the courts, which have used the protests as a chance to deploy new weapons, and practice with new techniques of control and containment, as well as set new legal precedents which allow for greater repressive powers. This recent round of “jail-mail” might seem limited in scope but it sets the precedent for a future world where, based upon omnipresent surveillance, anybody who attends a protest might become the subject of a criminal complaint months or even years later.

We understand this development not as the exception to the rule but rather the confirmation of a general trend toward the continuous expansion of the powers of the state, where civil disobedience-style tactics which, in other times and other jurisdictions, might be treated as mere infractions are met with the threat of jail-time and tens of thousands of dollars in fines. We hope that all sane people will stand with us in calling on the Yolo County DA to drop the charges.

written by several of those charged for the events of Nov. 9

(via Cuntrastamu!)

UC Berkeley Strike & UCD Occupation

15 November 2011

BERKELEY, California – Last week, demonstrators including students and faculty attempted to #Occupy a lawn on campus with tents in conjunction with the #OccupyWallStreet movement. Police responded by beating demonstrators with linked arms using batons. In response to police brutality, demonstrators held a general assembly and called for a strike for today. Since then, to add insult to injury, the UCB chancellor declared that demonstrators had been acting violently by merely linking arms.

As of noon, thousands of demonstrators have amassed in sproul plaza. A variety of teach outs and other events have been scheduled for the day. See the schedule here.

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2:15pm: UCPD shoots an individual at Haas school of business for allegedly carrying a weapon. UC officials have not stated if the incident was related to #OccupyCal.

~2:30pm: Around 400 demonstrators at UC Davis march to Mrak Hall, the main administrative building on campus, and occupied the lobby of the building in solidarity with Cal.

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Students take over Mrak Hall

4pm: University officials state during a press conference that the police shooting appears to be unrelated to the #OccupyCal protest

~4:30pm: The solidarity march from the oakland commune to UC Berkeley is on telegraph spanning several blocks.

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4:45pm: Oakland marchers join Berkeley demonstrators in Sproul plaza. GA to begin at 5pm.

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5:05pm: crowd estimate around 2-3000

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6:50pm: Demonstrators are still inside Mrak Hall at UC Davis. Some UCDPD are outside, but no signs of Davis police. UC Berkeley demonstrators are still holding at General Assembly.

8:15pm: Estimations of crowd size at Berkeley is difficult, but probably between 3-7000. It’s so crowded people are climbing on top of nearby buildings.

9:35pm: Doors u-locked open as droves of cops arrive at UC Davis. Many people in the building. An on-campus co-op (that brought us dinner) is having its weekly house meeting here.

Wednesday, 16 Nov

3:00am: Berkeley students are regrouping their tents while some police surround the encampment. Its unclear if they’ll be raided tonight. Word from San Francisco is that one of their satellite encampments, at Market st. next to Bank of America, is being forced to leave, but the police are saying the other encampments (eg. Justin Herman Plaza) will not be raided. Read more: dailycal, oaklandtribune. UC Davis Mrak Hall is still occupied! UCD livestream: 1, 2.

4:00am: A good 90+ people in Mrak Hall.

~2:30pm: Mrak Hall was raided by police. No one appears to have been arrested. Organizers are calling for a General Assembly at 4:30pm in front of Mrak Hall.

Other News:

  • Demonstrators at CSU Northridge formed an #OccupyCSUN encampment on campus on Tuesday.
  • #OccupySD holds its largest General Assembly on Tuesday, with some 1200 people.
  • #OccupyOakland demonstrator is under threat of deportation after being arrested while meditating during a police raid of one of the Oakland encampments a few days ago.

UC Davis Faculty Association Endorses Occupy Cal’s Call for Strike

11 November 2011

DAVIS, California – The UC Davis Faculty Association has endorsed the call for a system wide strike that was initially called for by students at UC Berkeley on Wednesday night following a string of brutality by police. The strike is scheduled for November 15th, next Tuesday.