Thursday, April 24, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Katehi, chief huddled with 13 on decision to remove camp

Deanna Johnson, an Occupy UC Davis participant, takes down her tent Saturday afternoon on the UCD Quad. With final exams over, protesters had removed all but about 16 tents from the Quad by Saturday. Some have spoken of staying over the holiday break, but plans are to have Occupy UC Davis be “back with a bang” when the winter quarter starts on Jan. 9, said Bernie Goldsmith, a local attorney active with the protesters. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

By
From page A1 | December 11, 2011 | 2 Comments

In the hours before police marched onto the Quad to clear the Occupy UC Davis encampment, Chancellor Linda Katehi consulted with members of her cabinet, attorneys and staff representing student affairs and communications.

In response to a request from The Enterprise, UCD released the names of those who took part in meetings and teleconferences in the hours leading up to the decision to remove the tents from the Quad on Nov. 18.

Katehi has publicly apologized and taken responsibility for what happened next: the arrest of nine students and one alumnus and the pepper-spraying of about a dozen more protesters.

The chancellor has sought to clarify, however, that any instructions she gave to police Chief Annette Spicuzza were not delivered one-on-one.

Instead, Katehi has said, they came during discussions by an “emergency team” that held “multiple” conference calls on Nov. 17, the day on which Occupy UC Davis set up its camp.

That “team” amounted to an ad hoc group of administrators and staff who took part based on their availability, UCD spokesperson Claudia Morain said. Along with Katehi and Spicuzza, other participants in the meetings and calls about the encampment included some or all of the following:

* Provost Ralph Hexter and Marie Carter-DuBois, an assistant executive vice chancellor who serves as Hexter’s principal adviser;

* John Meyer, vice chancellor for administrative and resource management, and Robert Loessberg-Zahl, institutional analysis director;

* Fred Wood, vice chancellor; Griselda Castro, assistant vice chancellor; and Emily Galindo, associate vice chancellor, all of student affairs;

* Cynthia Harrison Barbera, executive director of strategic communications; Mitchel Benson, associate vice chancellor for university communications; and Morain, director of UCD News Service;

* Chief Campus Counsel Steve Drown and Senior Campus Counsel Mike Sweeney; and

* Associate Chancellor Karl Engelbach, Katehi’s chief of staff.

Morain declined to speak in any detail about what was said during the teleconferences.

She said Saturday that the same administrators sometimes take part in similar calls when “something comes up and needs addressing” quickly. Morain described them as “thoughtful and deliberative” discussions during which the chancellor has the ultimate say.

In an interview with The Enterprise on Nov. 22, Katehi said recent police actions at UC Berkeley, including a video of police on that campus jabbing student and faculty protesters with batons, did come up during the teleconferences.

“We were very specific that it has to be peaceful and not like Berkeley,” Katehi said. “In a peaceful way, (Spicuzza) was only supposed to take the equipment down, not disperse the crowd, not remove the students.

“We also told her specifically she should not do anything if there were too many students or they were too upset or whatever the environment was that would not allow them to (remove the tents). That’s what she got from me.”

In a letter protesters received a few hours before police moved in, Katehi expressed concern about their health and safety, as well as the presence of nonstudents in the encampment.

Meyer, the administrator who oversees the police department, has described similarly what was asked of Spicuzza during the teleconference.

“Once these actions begin, however, … there is great discretion given to officers both for their safety and the scene, to make decisions in the field,” Meyer told students at a town hall meeting.

In a letter to the campus, Wood has called Nov. 18 the “darkest day” in his 30 years with the campus. Hexter, who arrived at UCD to take his post as second in command on Jan. 2, called the pepper-spraying “shocking and saddening.”

“We’ve seen how much can go wrong when we allow confrontation to take the place of dialogue,” Hexter told faculty at a town hall meeting.

UCD administrators have since refused to speak in detail about what took place, now that several investigations — including a probe that could lead to criminal charges — are under way.

One of the administration’s chief critics, English professor Nathan Brown, said Saturday that with whom Katehi spoke was beside the point — because, ultimately, she chose to follow UC Berkeley’s lead and send in armed police, with similarly disastrous results.

It was not until three days after the incident, on Nov. 22, Brown noted, that Katehi said that she expressly told Spicuzza not to use force.

“I’m sure that the administration will close ranks around the chancellor,” said Brown, who has led the call for Katehi to resign. “As far as I’m concerned, she’s responsible for what happened. She has said that in print, and I agree.”

Morain declined to say whether administrators discussed a response to a possible Occupy encampment earlier than Nov. 17. “Those are details that will come out in the course of the investigation,” she said.

On Nov. 15, after a rally on the Quad, about 50 protesters spent the night in the lobby of Mrak Hall, the campus’ main administration building.

Two tents were briefly set up outside, then, but a student affairs representative spoke with protesters who agreed to take them down, Morain said.

Among those who took part in the conference calls on Nov. 17, Spicuzza, Harrison Barbera, Engelbach and Morain were observed standing and watching at least some of the police action the following afternoon.

Two investigators from the firm Kroll Security have begin questioning witnesses about what happened. They are assembling information for a fact-finding report being compiled by Kroll’s chair, William Bratton, former chief of the Los Angeles Police Department.

Bratton’s report, expected by the first week of January, will then be turned over to a task force led by former California Supreme Court Justice Cruz Reynoso. That group will make recommendations to Katehi and UC President Mark Yudof.

Katehi continued to meet with faculty and students last week.

Meanwhile, with final exams over, protesters had removed all but about 16 tents from the Quad by Saturday. Some have spoken of staying over the holiday break, but “I doubt it,” said Bernie Goldsmith, a local attorney active with the protesters.

Dutton Hall will be cleared out and “broom-cleaned” sometime Sunday, the 13th day protesters have occupied the building. Goldsmith said protesters also were hiring a professional window cleaner.

Occupy UC Davis plans to be “back with a bang” when the winter quarter starts on Jan. 9, Goldsmith said.

— Reach Cory Golden at cgolden@davisenterprise.net or (530) 747-8046. Follow him on Twitter at @cory_golden

Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter. http://about.me/cory_golden
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 2 comments

The Davis Enterprise does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Ian GuayDecember 16, 2011 - 11:56 am

    Fire Katehi. her first reaction was to defend the spraying. It was her resposnsibility and she lead the response to the protest. It is past time to have her on admin leave prior to being asked to resign. Her current actions are just ways to justify her staying on.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Paul MedvedDecember 17, 2011 - 10:36 am

    What's it going to take for enough people to understand that as long as this Chancellor is at the helm, this sort of thing will keep happening? Each instance will be a little different from the last, but they will all be traceable back to an arrogance and fundamental lack of respect for all who do not serve her personal ambition. It's up to each of us to connect the dots and then do something about it.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

News

Food insecurity remains an issue for many county residents

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

 
4-H members prepare for Spring Show

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

 
 
Youth sports in focus on radio program

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Rummage sale will benefit preschool

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Concert benefits South Korea exchange

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Conference puts focus on Arab studies

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Central Park Gardens to host Volunteer Orientation Day

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Volkssporting Club plans North Davis walks

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

Hotel/conference center info meeting set

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Davis honors ‘green’ citizens

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

Water rate assistance bill advances

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Program explores STEM careers for girls

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

Embroiderers plan a hands-on project

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Cycle de Mayo benefits Center for Families

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A8

Author to read ‘The Cat Who Chose to Dream’

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A12

 
.

Forum

Ortiz is the right choice for Yolo

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

The high cost of employment

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
High-five to Union Bank

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

Broken sprinklers waste water

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Three more administrators?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

Neustadt has experience for the job

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
Here’s a plan to save big on employee costs

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

Davis is fair, thoughtful

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

 
.

Sports

DHS/Franklin II is a close loss for Devil softballers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
DHS tracksters sweep another DVC meet

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Another DVC blowout for DHS girls soccer

By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Young reinvents his game to help Aggies improve on the diamond

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

DHS boys shuffle the deck to beat Cards

By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Baseball roundup: Giants slam Rockies in the 11th

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
UCD roundup: Aggies lose a softball game at Pacific

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

Jahn jumps to Sacramento Republic FC

By Evan Ream | From Page: B8

 
.

Features

.

Arts

Emerson, Da Vinci to present ‘Once Upon a Mattress’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
Winters Plein Air Festival begins Friday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
Bach Soloists wrap up season on April 28

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A11

 
Congressional art competition open to high school students

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Thursday, April 24, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B6