UC Davis police chief joins pepper spray cops on leave
UPDATE (Mon. 8:41 a.m.): UC Davis has placed police chief Annette Spicuzza on administrative leave. Chancellor Linda Katehi has also called for a review of the police department’s use of force by the Yolo County District Attorney’s office.
The images are shocking and revolting: A line of Occupy Davis protestors with linked arms, seated on the ground and surrounded by police, are blasted by pepper spray in their faces at point-blank range by a riot gear-clad officer.
Multiple videos of the incident quickly popped up on YouTube, spreading outrage around the world at the seemingly casual and unprovoked spraying of the protestors.
Today, the AP reports that the two UC Davis police officers involved in the incident have been placed on administrative leave. Though the AP did not report the officer’s names, one presumes the two include Lt. John Pike, the officer first seen spraying protesters in the video, according to the California Aggie.
A thick, bright-red jet of pepper spray can be seen hitting the faces of protestors on the video. Fatima Sbeih, a UC Davis senior, told the California Aggie.
“I didn’t even hear a warning for the spraying, just by the students telling us all to turn around, and then we turned and we were sprayed, just like that. One of the cops was yelling at a guy saying he’s going to spray him in the face and then grabs him in the face and sprays him. They grabbed one of the protesters and sprayed it directly in his mouth.”