Occupy Movement News Update of the Day: A powerful scene unfolded yesterday at UC Davis, where hundreds students gathered outside the on-campus site of a press conference held by chancellor Linda Katehi in the wake of Friday’s controversial pepper-spraying incident.
According to reports, Katehi refused to leave the building for several hours, intimating that she feared for her safety. She was eventually persuaded that there was no cause for alarm, and headed in the direction of her SUV through a path lined with silent students sitting with their arms linked.
Katehi, who has come under fire for ordering police to remove the Occupy Davis encampment from the campus quad, has been asked to resign by the board of the Davis Faculty Association. An open letter penned by Assistant English Professor Nathan Brown has spread throughout the net, rallying many behind it.
During the press conference Katehi said she didn’t think it was “appropriate for me to resign at this moment.”
In addition to calling for a investigative task force, Katehi will also address students directly tomorrow.
Meanwhile, in late-breaking news, the two UCD police officers responsible for administering the pepper spray have been placed on administrative leave.
Earlier, UC Davis Police Chief Annette Spicuzza said officers used the less-than-lethal agent because they feared for their own safety. One of the students who was sprayed says Lt. John Pike used military-grade pepper spray that is meant to be used “at a minimum of 15 feet,” but was instead blasted “at point blank range.”
In Oakland, an impromptu tent city established last night by Occupy protesters was cleared this morning by police officers. The Oakland arm of the OWS movement has been without a homebase since police dismantled the encampment at Frank Ogawa Plaza in the early hours of November 14th.