DAVIS (CBS13) – Protesters surrounded a UC Davis building after being locked out of a press conference about Friday’s clash between police and demonstrators, keeping the UC Davis chancellor and the campus chief of police contained within the building for hours.
In the press conference with television and print journalists shortly after 4:00 p.m. Saturday, UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi and Police Chief Annette Spicuzza said they would create an independent review board to analyze video and evidence from the raid on the encampment on the campus quad Friday afternoon that drew outrage and criticism after officers used pepper spray to subdue protesters who were sitting and linking arms.
>> Raw Video: Saturday Press Conference On Clash With Protesters
>> Raw Video: Police Pepper Spray UC Davis Students
Katehi called the encounter a “difficult situation” and said she was surprised to see how it was handled, but added that she had warned protesters repeatedly that camping is not allowed on campus. Many protesters did leave voluntarily before the confrontation, officials said.
Specific details about the police response to the incident won’t be available until an investigation is completed, Katehi added.
Chief Spicuzza said officers became surrounded by hundreds of protesters and used the pepper spray on the sitting demonstrators to allow them to leave, but said she didn’t want to comment on specific actions until the details are independently reviewed.
Student demonstrators, who were not allowed into the press conference, gathered outside the Surge II building and began banging on doors and windows, cutting the question-and-answer section of the conference short.
The crowd swelled in size over the next couple hours, with demonstrators frequently chanting for Katehi’s resignation and urging other protesters to remain non-violent.
Just before 7:00 p.m., protesters made a human walkway out of the building and linked arms, promising to remain silent as Katehi left the building. Katehi left the building without comment and drove away from the scene without incident.