Updated: Two Arrested in Berkeley Raid on Occupy Cal

By Jeff Shuttleworth
Thursday November 17, 2011 - 10:34:00 AM

Two people were arrested when police from the University of California at Berkeley and other agencies disbanded the Occupy Cal encampment on the steps of Sproul Hall early today, a university spokesman said. 

The two men were arrested for failure to disperse and unlawful lodging, UC Berkeley spokesman Dan Mogulof said. 

Occupy Cal protesters set up an encampment of about 15 tents Tuesday night after a general assembly attended by more than 1,000 people voted by a margin of 89 percent to 11 percent to do so, protesters said. 

A previous attempt to set up an encampment last week was thwarted by UC Berkeley police and officers from other agencies, whose aggressive tactics have been criticized by Occupy Cal protesters. 

UC Berkeley has a policy against allowing camping on campus, but police didn't act immediately to remove the tents that were set up Tuesday night. 

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. today 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 this afternoon. 

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