BERKELEY (CBS SF) – Police in riot gear raided the Occupy Cal encampment early Thursday morning, arresting two protesters and removing about 20 tents from the UC Berkeley campus.

Police surrounded about 40 demonstrators camped in Sproul Plaza around 3:30 a.m. and gave them 10 minutes to gather their belongings and leave.

KCBS’ Bob Melrose Reports:

Ian Watson said he and most of the other protesters decided to leave voluntarily. “Many people peacefully removed their tent at the insistence of the Police Department,” he said.

The two protesters who refused to leave were cited for illegal camping and unlawful assembly, said Lt. Alex Yao, a spokesman for the UC Berkeley Police Department.

They have been identified as 24-year-old Alex Kim, an English major, and 24-year-old Mike Porter. Porter identified himself as a member of Occupy Oakland.

The encampment went up on Tuesday night in defiance of a campus ban on camping.

UC Berkeley spokesman Dan Mogulof said the university has a policy against allowing camping on campus, but police didn’t act immediately to remove the tents that were set up Tuesday

Mogulof said university officials and police monitored the situation and waited for a time when they thought it would be safe and effective to remove the tents.

He said they decided that 3:30 a.m. Thursday would be a good time to take action, and he said the removal of the tents was “very peaceful” and there weren’t any confrontations.

Occupy Cal protesters were given hourly warnings by police that the encampment was illegal and they were subject to arrest, Mogulof said.

The protesters were given time to take down their tents, Mogulof  said. They also were given time to take away two pianos that they had set up on the steps of Sproul Hall for music sessions, he said.

University staff members cleaned the steps of Sproul Hall after the tents were removed, according to Mogulof.

He said about a dozen protesters remained in the area as of early Thursday afternoon.

A speaker at the protesters’ general assembly Tuesday night said there would be more general assemblies at Sproul Plaza at 6 p.m. every night.

University officials waited to remove the encampment because much of the police department’s resources had been diverted to investigate a fatal officer-involved shooting inside the Haas School of Business, according to a campus spokesman.

The peaceful removal of the tents overnight contrasted sharply with the raid a week earlier that resulted in six arrests and the injury of several protesters.

“The crowd was very, very peaceful and they were compliant to police officers’ lawful commands to vacate,” Yao said.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (4)
  1. Milan Moravec says:

    Every qualified California student should get a place in University of California(UC) system. That’s a desirable goal for a public university. However, UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau displaces Californians qualified for education at Cal. with $50,600 tuition Foreigners.
    Paying more is not a better education. UC tuition increases exceed the national average rate of increase. The UC Board Of Regents jeopardizes Californians attending higher education by making UC the most expensive public university.
    Self-serving tuition increases are used by UC President Mark Yudof to increase the pay of 80,000 eligible faculty & others. Payoffs like these point to higher operating costs and still higher tuition for Californians. Instate tuition consumes 14% of Ca. Median Family Income! UC is hijacking our kids’ futures: student debt.
    I agree that faculty in higher education and senior management, like Yudof and Birgeneau, should consider the students’ welfare & put it high on their values.
    Deeds unfortunately do not bear out the students’ welfare values of campus senior managements and the UC Board of Regents.
    Opinions to UC Board of Regents, email

  2. WASPy says:

    OBAMA owns this Occupy/Squatter mess….the vandalism, the assaults, the rapes, the thefts, the murders…even the lice and fleas.

    BARRY’s BROWNSHIRTS = 99% human debris

    1. Comment says:

      It’s Obama’s Pee Party 😉

      Remember what Nancy Pelosi said about the “occupy movement” some 6 weeks ago? “God bless them.”

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