8 Protestors Arrested at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo for Rioting
One protestor allegedly tried to take an officer’s gun, while others used wooden shields to smash through barricades.
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Cal Poly San Luis Obispo (Cal Poly SLO) police officers responded to a winter career fair at the campus recreation center on Tuesday when a small group of pro-Palestinian protestors attempted to break in.
The incident happened at a planned protest in support of Palestine, reports Mustang News. Although the majority of the 30 or 40 protestors were peaceful, eight of them were arrested for trying to get into the job fair, reports the Cal Coast News. They were dressed in black and wearing masks. Six of the eight people arrested were Cal Poly SLO and Cuesta College students, while the others were non-students.
Both campus police and San Luis Obispo Police Department (SLOPD) officers responded to the incident.
During the encounter, one of the protestors allegedly tried to grab an officer’s gun.
“A SLOPD officer was forced to protect himself when a protestor attempted to take one of his weapons” SLOPD said in a statement. “The officer responded with a hand strike to retain his weapon and neither the officer nor the suspect was seriously injured. The suspect was arrested for the following charges: PC 148(a)(1) Resisting an officer, PC 148(B) Taking a peace officers weapon, PC 69 Obstructing an officer, and PC404.6(A) Inciting a riot.”
Some of the protestors also used wooden shields to smash through the barricades that were erected around the rec center. Video shows officers throwing some of the protestors to the ground.
The group was protesting the U.S. military recruiters as well as the defense and missile companies exhibiting at the career fair, including Lockheed Martin, General Atomic, and Rantec Systems that supplied Israel with weapons, reports Mustang News.
In response to the incident, Cal Poly SLO President Jeffrey D. Armstrong said: “We are a public campus, and we support the rights of all campus community members and visitors to speak their minds — but we will not tolerate violence, disruption, trespassing, or other criminal activity. Individuals who wish to engage in the free and peaceful exchange of ideas are always welcome on our campus. Those who would use force and coercion are not.”
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