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Live Blog for #Occupy Movement: The Fallout from Pepper Spraying of UC Davis Students


The University of California-Davis campus police chief, Annette Spicuzza, was put on leave this morning. That’s the latest in the fallout from the pepper spraying of students during an Occupy Davis action on Friday. The students stood their ground when the campus moved police in to disperse their encampment. The students engaged in nonviolent civil disobedience and Lieutenant John Pike and at least one other officer sprayed students.

Spicuzza is being placed on leave to “restore trust and calm tensions,” according to a released statement from the university. Additionally, two officers involved in the pepper spraying were placed on leave over the weekend as well (their identities were kept secret).

Calls for UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi to resign have escalated. Thousands have signed a petition urging her resignation. An untenured professor, Nathan Brown, has written an eloquent open letter asking her to step down. But, Katehi does not think her resignation is necessary.

UC Davis students have scheduled a rally for noon Monday.

Firedoglake’s premier live blog continues now. Here is a Twitter list to follow for the latest updates: [cont’d.]

4:59 PM From earlier, photo of all the students who came for the rally at UC Davis.

4:57 PM Now at UC Davis, according to Gavin Aronsen, “people have split into groups of 20 to vote on a proposal for a systemwide UC strike on Monday.”

4:42 PM The NYCLU sends a letter to Bloomberg on press mistreatment by the NYPD during the eviction of Occupy Wall Street and so do representatives from various New York-based media organizations.

And, the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued a press release showing concern with how press were handled.

4:38 PM So, just how damaging is pepper-spray to your health? Scientific American has published an article by Deborah Blum:

Its very mechanism, though, should remind us to be wary. As the North Carolina researchers point out, any compound that can influence nerve function is, by definition, risky. Research tells us that pepper spray acts as a potent inflammatory agent. It amplifies allergic sensitivities, it irritates and damages eyes, membranes, bronchial airways, the stomach lining – basically what it touches. It works by causing pain – and, as we know, pain is the body warning us of an injury.

In general, these are short term effects. Pepper spray, for instance, induces a burning sensation in the eyes in part by damaging cells in the outer layer of the cornea. Usually, the body repairs this kind of injury fairly neatly. But with repeated exposures, studies find, there can be permanent damage to the cornea.

4:30 PM Follow @lhfang for the specifics on the rally at UC Davis, where it appears thousands attended. [Photos from @lhfang]

Highlights include the first student speaker (video above), who was pepper sprayed, getting up to condemn Chancellor Katehi and call for her resignation.

Nathan Brown, the professor who called for Katehi to resign in an open letter, speaking:

And, some time later, Katehi showed up to give some vague words of apology. Students were mostly respectful and quiet, a few shouted at her to resign. (Raw video of her speech.)

2:29 PM Protest (and presumably drumming) continues near Bloomberg’s mansion

2:22 PM Occupy Toronto gets a last minute stay.

2:09 PM Gizmodo with details on the pepper spray used on UC Davis students

2:00 PM Angus Johnston, who runs the “Student Activism” blog, with ten things you should know about the incident

CommunityThe Dissenter

Live Blog for #Occupy Movement: The Fallout from Pepper Spraying of UC Davis Students

The University of California-Davis campus police chief Annette Spicuzza being put on leave this morning is the latest in the fallout from the pepper spraying of students during an Occupy Davis action on Friday. The students stood their ground when the campus moved police in to disperse their encampment. They engaged in nonviolent civil disobedience and Lieutenant John Pike and at least one other officer sprayed students.

Spicuzza is being placed on leave to “restore trust and calm tensions,” according to a released statement from the university. Additionally, two officers involved in the pepper spraying were placed on leave over the weekend as well (their identities were kept secret).

Calls for UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi to resign have escalated. Thousands have signed a petition urging her resignation. An untenured professor, Nathan Brown, has written an eloquent open letter asking her to step down. But, Katehi does not think her resignation is necessary.

UC Davis students have scheduled a rally for noon.

Firedoglake’s premier live blog continues now. Here is a Twitter list to follow for the latest updates:

8:56 PM Occupy Wall Street protesters who set out to march from New York City to Washington, DC, complete their journey.

8:48 PM Students rallying against tuition hikes were pushed, shoved and some beaten and arrested by officers at Baruch College. Here is video of the scene that unfolded earlier:

Abuse of press by police at New York protests continued as a woman with an NYC press pass, according to @TheOther99 said a cop grabbed her and tossed me into a revolving door. She said I’m with the press. She is now planning on filing an official report and is with a major media outlet.

At least 12 were arrested. This was the scene outside the college and as a crowd waited for those arrested to come out.

More here at the NY Times‘ City Room blog.

6:44 PM NYPD has disappeared the WikiLeaks Truck

6:21 PM ICYMI: President of the University of California issued a statement on the pepper spraying of UC Davis students.

6:04 PM Protest against tuition hikes at Baruch College is getting ugly. Students tried to march on a Trustee meeting. They then went out into a lobby and tried to hold a GA and police surrounded them. They linked arms and are being pulled apart.

5:29 PM “Coalition for the First Amendment” formed by New York Press Club in response to NYPD abuse of press

5:24 PM How Occupy Wall Street is getting around the no-blanket rule in Liberty Park

5:20 PM Update on Occupy Harvard: battle of the petitions

4:59 PM From earlier, photo of all the students who came for the rally at UC Davis.

4:57 PM Now at UC Davis, according to Gavin Aronsen, “people have split into groups of 20 to vote on a proposal for a systemwide UC strike on Monday.”

4:42 PM The NYCLU sends a letter to Bloomberg on press mistreatment by the NYPD during the eviction of Occupy Wall Street and so do representatives from various New York-based media organizations.

And, the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued a press release showing concern with how press were handled.

4:38 PM So, just how damaging is pepper-spray to your health? Scientific American has published an article by Deborah Blum:

Its very mechanism, though, should remind us to be wary. As the North Carolina researchers point out, any compound that can influence nerve function is, by definition, risky. Research tells us that pepper spray acts as a potent inflammatory agent. It amplifies allergic sensitivities, it irritates and damages eyes, membranes, bronchial airways, the stomach lining – basically what it touches. It works by causing pain – and, as we know, pain is the body warning us of an injury.

In general, these are short term effects. Pepper spray, for instance, induces a burning sensation in the eyes in part by damaging cells in the outer layer of the cornea. Usually, the body repairs this kind of injury fairly neatly. But with repeated exposures, studies find, there can be permanent damage to the cornea.

4:30 PM Follow @lhfang for the specifics on the rally at UC Davis, where it appears thousands attended. [Photos from @lhfang]

Highlights include the first student speaker, who was pepper sprayed, getting up to condemn Chancellor Katehi and call for her resignation.

Nathan Brown, the professor who called for Katehi to resign in an open letter, speaking:

And, some time later, Katehi showed up to give some vague words of apology. Students were mostly respectful and quiet, a few shouted at her to resign. (Raw video of her speech.)

2:29 PM Protest (and presumably drumming) continues near Bloomberg’s mansion

2:22 PM Occupy Toronto gets a last minute stay.

2:09 PM Gizmodo with details on the pepper spray used on UC Davis students

2:00 PM Angus Johnston, who runs the “Student Activism” blog, with ten things you should know about the incident

 

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Kevin Gosztola

Kevin Gosztola

Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure."