Occupy UC Davis: Protesters vow to stay through Thanksgiving weekend
Occupy UC Davis protesters are vowing to stay at the camp through the long holiday weekend, with the help of tents donated to the cause in response to an appeal on Facebook.
The camp got national attention after video showed police pepper-spraying peaceful, seated protesters. There are now 75 tents at the site.
"A lot of the tents that look the same have been donated by various people through the Internet," demonstrator Erica Rettig told Fox 40.
Last week, UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi had ordered tents at the site to come down, leading to Friday's confrontation. But university Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Ralph J. Hexter said Wednesday that police were acting against orders when they used pepper spray on students.
Hexter said he had been in high-level discussions about the Davis encampment before police moved in, and "the chancellor and I and others in those discussions made it very clear that we wanted this to go forward peaceably.
"We definitely did not want a repeat of Berkeley, where batons were used," Hexter said. "We also discussed quite openly that, if the numbers were too large and the police chief felt that her force could not handle it peacefully, they were to disengage."
There are now several investigations into the pepper-spray incident, including one headed by former LAPD chief William Bratton.
At the Occupy camp, some protesters told the UC Davis campus newspaper, the California Aggie, that they would stay through the weekend and that a Thanksgiving meal would be served.
— Shelby Grad