Police clash with Occupy protesters at UC Berkeley
BERKELEY, Calif. (KABC) -- Police clashed with anti-Wall Street protesters at the University of California, Berkeley, on Wednesday after demonstrators tried to set up a tent city.
Officers in riot gear first used batons to push back the crowd. As the tension escalated, police clashed with the students who were protecting the tents set up outside the administration building.
"I think this is a really horrible effort at crowd control, if you want to call it that," said protester Greg Levin. "I also think there was some really bad tactical decisions being made by the administration toward peaceful protesters."
Administrators told protesters they could demonstrate, but not camp out.
The incident in Berkeley follows dramatic protests held by the Occupy Movement in Oakland and in Southern California.
City leaders said protesters in Oakland are hurting downtown businesses.
Meantime, eleven people were arrested in Westwood for unlawful assembly when they shut down Wilshire Boulevard. The protesters want banks to sign the ReFund California Pledge to make Wall Street pay for public education.
In downtown Los Angeles, 1,200 people converged in the Financial District. They said the banks are making huge profits, and it's time for them to pay more taxes.
"Start loaning it out to the same taxpayers that bailed them out, so that small businesses can start using money to get people back to work," said protester Marlene Allen.
Some protesters who set up tents in the Bank of America plaza were escorted out.
It was a peaceful protest designed to send a message.
"People are losing their homes. They've lost their homes. If you're not a millionaire, you're the 99-percent. The 99-percent is standing up now, because we don't want to take it anymore," said protester Blanca Gomez.
It's unknown how long Los Angeles city officials will let the encampment at City Hall continue. The city parks manager told the mayor that Occupy L.A. protesters have damaged the grass, trees and sprinkler heads on the lawn.
protest, wall street, california news, melissa macbride
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