Police Review Board holds second public hearing Wednesday

The UC Berkeley Police Review Board held a public hearing Wednesday evening to hear from students, faculty and community members about their experiences with police during the Nov. 9 Occupy Cal protests.

The forum was the second such event this week and is part of an attempt by the board to further its investigation of the Nov. 9 events after missing its original deadline to submit a report to Chancellor Robert Birgeneau at the end of January. About 15 students and community members were present at Wednesday’s meeting, and many voiced their shock at a lack a of immediate response from the campus about UCPD’s actions.

Alex Barnard, a UC Berkeley graduate student, said he had two of his ribs broken when he was hit with police batons before being arrested in connection with the protest. He urged UCPD to “grow up, and take responsibility for  your actions.”

Senior Jennie Lu expressed her disappointment with a system she said allowed police officers to harm students and get away with it.

“I hope you can sleep at night,” she said.

Board Chair Jesse Choper also addressed students who might be afraid to come forward and speak out against the police department.

“We understand that there are people who are scared to speak, but if people want to speak to the five of us privately we can certainly make sure that that their names will not be made public,” Choper said. “Anyone who wants to send something anonymously can send it by email  to any one of the two students on this panel, so we have this testimony.”

A subcommittee of the board will also hold a hearing March 5, in which students, faculty and community members will be able to present videos and statements about the protests.