Police Arrests At Least 12 Student Protestors at U.C. Berkeley

The 12 pro-Hamas protesters who were arrested last Thursday after occupying a vacant building on the UC Berkeley campus were facing charges of burglary, vandalism, and conspiracy, according to university officials.

In a statement last Friday, Assistant Vice Chancellor Dan Mogulof said the protesters who resisted arrest and assaulted police officers using crowbars could also face additional charges.

The pro-Hamas protesters occupied the Anna Head Building last Wednesday. The building, which sustained damage in a fire, had been vacant and boarded up since 2022.

Law enforcement officers from over 20 agencies, including Oakland Police, UC Berkeley campus police, and deputies from Alameda and San Mateo Counties, forcibly removed the protesters on Thursday night.

The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office declined to say what charges would be pursued.

The protesters occupied the building just two days after the pro-Hamas encampment in front of Sproul Hall was partially dispersed after the protesters headed to Merced last Wednesday to protest at the Board of Regents meeting for the University of California.

The protesters occupied the campus for 22 days to protest the university’s investments in Israel. Eventually, Chancellor Carol Christ released a statement expressing her support for a ceasefire in Gaza and promising to review the school’s ties to Israel. She noted in her statement that UC Berkeley’s investments were controlled by the Board of Regents.

Pro-Hamas encampments began cropping up on college campuses nationwide last month.

Over the weekend, students at Philadelphia’s Drexel University set up a tent encampment on campus, prompting Drexel President John Fry to call for the protesters to disperse immediately.

The university shifted to online learning on Monday while campus employees were instructed to work remotely.

In a statement on Monday night, Fry said he authorized “all necessary steps” to be taken to “clear the encampment safely.”

Since the campus protests began in mid-April, over 3,000 protesters have been arrested.