UC Berkeley worker released from UCPD custody after union rally

Matthew Lo/Staff

Update 2/1/2018: This article has been updated to include information from campus spokesperson Roqua Montez.

UCPD officers tackled and detained a UC Berkeley employee during a rally organized by AFSCME Local 3299, the University of California’s largest employee union.

The rally — which was meant to draw attention to the low wages and alleged mistreatment of some UC workers — began about noon Thursday. In a video circulated on Facebook, the man, who is represented by the union, was detained by UCPD about 1 p.m. The man was identified as housing and dining services employee David Cole by other protesters, who later gathered in front of California Hall to demand his release and encouraged others to join the rally. Cole was released from custody about 6:40 p.m. 


Cole allegedly blocked the way of an occupied vehicle that was at the intersection of Telegraph Avenue and Bancroft Way, where the protest gathered, and threw a sign he was carrying at the vehicle, according to an email from campus spokesperson Roqua Montez. The driver of the vehicle got out and flagged down a police officer for assistance.

Multiple UCPD officers physically detained Cole after he allegedly resisted arrest, Montez said in the email. He added that Cole sustained a cut on his forehead, which was treated by Berkeley Fire Department personnel after he was detained.

“UCPD and the campus administration always see the use of force as unfortunate and it is used only when necessary to protect the community and the officers involved in carrying out their duties,” Montez said in the email.

Cole has been transported to Alameda County Medical Center, according to the email, and will be charged with vandalism and resisting an officer.

This is a developing article. Check back for updates.

Staff writer Matthew Lo contributed to this report.

Ani Vahradyan is the university news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @anivahrad.

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  • Nunya Beeswax

    These guys chose to block the sidewalk at Bancroft & Telegraph, gathering in a circle around a woman with a microphone who was going on and on about some mineral used in computing devices that was (she said) mined with child labor. What precisely this had to do with working conditions at UC Berkeley was not explained, but the onlookers favored her with a round of applause anyway. Was it a protest or an open-mike session? Whichever, I thought it was pure asshattery for them to block the sidewalk as they did, but then it seems to be de rigueur at protests to inconvenience passers-by.

    I’m a union member myself, and support the right to protest, but I thought these people were being jerks.

    • Kathy Harrison

      Agree. I’m a union member and work at a uc, and we’re warned not to block intersections during pickets. Was this protest worth breaking that rule? This was not a strategic use of our limited voice, imo.

      • SMH

        Kathy Harrison…: And you’re probably*married* to a *PIG*.

        • SMH

          Also, there’s plenty of video of UC *PIGS* brutalizing, gun-threatening, pepper-spraying (like the UC Davis students for just sitting on a walkway/grass on their own campus), surrounding, or threatening with arrest, unarmed, *NONVIOLENT* students and even young academics who weren’t marching in any street near campus. –Or the famous case last year (posted on Youtube and that also went viral) of a UCPD *PIG* robbing a Latino vendor of the money from the Latino’s wallet!!?

          But, I’m sure that *PIGS* & *MAWA* (“Make America *White* Again”) types *always* have an excuse for *PIG* brutality.

          –With all due apologies to the *4*-legged pigs (who can actually be quit intelligent, quite friendly, and even quite empathetic) — vs. the *2*-legged *PIGS*.

          • SMH

            Btw,:Kathy Harrison: “I’m a union member and work at a uc”

            ‘Surrrre’ you are…

          • SMH

            The UC Davis pepper-sprayed students *SUED* the UCPD there and each of the students collected a cool *$30,000* apiece!!

            For *that* amount of money, the UCPD can pepper spray me *anytime*!! — As I’m sure the Davis students ultimately felt too!!

            I hope the Black union employee-activist collects a nice *extra* check –$$$$$– from UC too!

          • lspanker

            Lay off da pipe before you post online, knowhatimsayin?

      • SMH

        Yo, Harrison…: You’re probably *married* a *PIG*… — or have a *PIG* in your family.

        • lspanker

          And you really wonder why just about everyone else here thinks you’re an @sshole?

    • SMH

      Nunya Beeswax …: You even *look* like a *PIG*.

    • SMH

      ____ You even *look* like a *PIG*. ____

  • SMH
  • SMH

    – – –


    And the university (spokesperson, who probably wasn’t even there) backing up the *PIGS*, word for word.

    The *PIGS* celebrating the very first day of Black History month — as in, ‘GET ON THE GROUNNND, NI**ER…, SO WE CAN GRIND OUR KNEEES ON YOUR NECK AND BACK AND PUSH YOUR FACE INTO THE ASPHALT.”

    (The UCPD has a *RECORD* of blatant brutality even against young white female *academics/professors* and white elderly people, WHO WERE VOLUNTARILY *SUBMITTING* TO ARREST, as in the former UC Berkeley Occupy movement.)

    – – –

    • Rob Appeldorn

      If you don’t like working for the “PIG”, quit. Nobody is forcing you to work at UC and nobody is forcing you to live here or anywhere for that matter. MAGA and leave all of us alone.

      • SMH

        Yo, Rob Appeldorn…: You post speaks for itself.

        Btw, don’t you mean “MAWA”? — “Make America *White* Again”?

        (And what’s *this* about: “If you don’t like working for the “PIG”, quit.”???… Are you on meth?)

        • lspanker

          You’re the last person who should accuse anyone else here of being on drugs, you blathering fruitcake…

          • SMH

            “lspanker” — OBVIOUSLY *UNEMPLOYED*, still living on an old crusty mattress (with soiled stacks of old encrusted pporrrno mags and his ‘special’ pills next to it) in a dark dank corner of his elderly mother’s dank musty concrete and moldy cinder block wall basement, “lspanker” has *OBVIOUSLY* got NO LLLIFE, and *NNNOTHING* to do (when he’s not [ahem] using his old encrusted mags) but scan and post in *multiple* Daily Cal comment sections *every* single day — “lspanker” has spewed _ *12*, 224_ comment posts (not counting the dozen more he’s probably already starting on just this afternoon under multiple other Daily Cal articles since now) — and he’s got the nerve to accuse *anyone else* of “blathering”…


          • stupid seal

            U actually have a point SMH. Ispanker sounds really sad when u put it that way….

      • lspanker

        FWIW, our friend SMH here is mentally ill, and probably lacks the faculties to understand and heed your sage advice…