Two Arrested After Rally for Tree-Sitter

Spectators at Wheeler Hall Protest Clash With Police While Trying to Deliver Water to Trees

Photo: Jason Ahmadi, a UC Berkeley alumnus, is arrested at a campus protest targeting the UC Board of Regents. Ahmadi said he made a banner used in the protest.
Michael Kang/Photo
Jason Ahmadi, a UC Berkeley alumnus, is arrested at a campus protest targeting the UC Board of Regents. Ahmadi said he made a banner used in the protest.

Related Articles »

  • Printer Friendly Printer Friendly
  • Comments Comments (0)

UCPD took two people into custody yesterday after they participated in a large rally for the tree-sitter outside Wheeler Hall.

As a crowd of 50 spectators gathered, about 10 to 20 supporters tried to deliver water to the protester, who identifies himself as Fresh.

Fresh has been in the trees since Feb. 26, calling for the democratization of the UC Board of Regents and the end of the campus's deal with energy giant BP, among other demands.

About eight police officers tried to prevent the crowd from delivering the water, saying that aiding the suspect would lead to arrest.

"We're trying to give water to the poor man in the tree," said Ann Clark, a Berkeley resident who watched the incident.

Supporters linked arms and gathered tightly around a water jug while some filled small bottles with water.

Following Fresh's suggestion, a man in the crowd tied water bottles together and flung them into the tree, where they caught on the branches.

The man who threw the bottles was immediately taken into custody on suspiction of obstructing an officer and being a principal in the lodging case, said UCPD Lt. Adan Tejada.

"This is a crime scene, and (Fresh) is a suspect for causing a disturbance on campus and possibly other charges, so we are preventing others from aiding him," said UCPD Officer Sean Aranas.

The second person taken into custody was UC Berkeley alumnus Jason Ahmadi, who said he made a banner used by Fresh. Police said Ahmadi was taken into custody for allegedly being a principal in the lodging case.

Supporters of the Wheeler Hall protest said UCPD should not have taken people into custody, since they said provisions have been given to the Memorial Stadium oak grove tree-sitters.

"They allowed us to give gallons of water at the other tree-sit," said Jonas LaMattery-Brownell, an Oakland resident.

Police said they had the discretion to choose whether or not to make arrests for misdemeanors.

During the rally, police and protesters were pushing each other. Many said the violence was uncalled for.

"(The police) targeted me because I was standing up," said Beverly Dove, who was involved in the altercation. "Is this what democracy looks like?"

After police pulled the water jug away from the crowd and emptied it, the crowd slowly broke up.


Selina MacLaren covers crime. Contact her at [email protected]

Comments (0) »

Comment Policy
The Daily Cal encourages readers to voice their opinions respectfully in regards to both the readers and writers of The Daily Californian. Comments are not pre-moderated, but may be removed if deemed to be in violation of this policy. Comments should remain on topic, concerning the article or blog post to which they are connected. Brevity is encouraged. Posting under a pseudonym is discouraged, but permitted. Click here to read the full comment policy.
White space
Left Arrow
Image Presentation shows downward trend in crime rates, ...
A presentation given by the Berkeley...Read More»
Image Former campus doctor faces charges
A former UC Berkeley health center doctor was charged Wednesday by the Alam...Read More»
Image Fire breaks out at Haas School of Business
A fire broke out early Wednesday morning at the Haas School of Business...Read More»
Image Recent peeping incidents spark concern
The UC Berkeley dormitories have seen a marked increase in the number of pe...Read More»
Image Downtown Berkeley dumpster fire causes evacuation ...
Berkeley Fire Department firefighters respon...Read More»
Right Arrow

Job Postings

White Space