SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)— Two students from City College of San Francisco have filed administrative claims against the city and community college district after they say they were beaten up by police officers during a campus protest in March.
Otto Pippenger, 21, and Dimitrious Philliou, 20, explained their alleged attack by San Francisco police to members of the press on Tuesday. The March 13th protest at Conlan Hall on campus started as a peaceful protest. Their lawsuit seeks more police training for demonstrations as well as a public apology.
“I was thrown almost exactly where we’re standing now in front of as many people that are gathered around me now and I was beaten until I lost consciousness,” said Philliou. He added that his wrists were broken from being roughed up.
Pippenger said police tackled him to the ground, choked him, and drove their knees into his back before pepper spraying him.
Both of the plaintiffs claimed they did nothing to incite violence or anything illegal and that they still suffer physical and emotional trauma from the incident.
According to their attorney Rachel Ledermen, president of the San Francisco chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, the city and school district have 45 days to respond to the claim.
“We’re going to be seeking an injunction as well as compensation for Otto and Dimitrious for their injuries and the violations to their constitutional rights,” she said.
The day after the rally, City College Chancellor Arthur Tyler issued a statement explaining that campus police told protesters they would not be able to enter Conlan Hall due to safety concerns.
School officials said six campus police suffered minor injuries during the protest and one came in contact with pepper spray after students allegedly stormed the building.
Neither CCSF or the SFPD would comment on forthcoming lawsuit on Tuesday.