As of today, Lt. John Pike does not work for the UC Davis Police Department anymore. Lt. John Pike became famous after using bright orange pepper spray on disobedient, but unarmed UC Davis students during a protest at the Quad. The manner at which he held the 1 gallon pepper spray tank and the nonchalance he sprayed the pepper spray in the students faces while many other students stood around the event and recorded it on their cell phones.
This not only made UC Davis front page news all around the world, it also made Lt. Pike an internet meme.
by the Associated Press via Sac Bee
The Sacramento Bee reports (http://bit.ly/M1vmBG) that Alameda Superior Court Judge Evelio Grillo issued the ruling on Tuesday in response to a lawsuit filed by the Sacramento Bee and the Los Angeles Times.
The UC police officers’ union had tried to keep the names under wraps, saying that naming officers was barred under state law and could subject them to harassment.
But Grillo says the report is subject to release under the California Public Records Act. He did, however, stay his order through July 27 so the police union can appeal.
The name of the officer shown on video footage spraying the seated Occupy protesters on Nov. 18 had previously been released.
In the aftermath of the pepper spray incident at the quad on November 17th, 2011, the UC Davis Police Department Chief Anette Spicuzza is stepping down as of Thursday (April 19th, 2012). Presumably, this is because of the scathing Reynoso Task Force report.
More can be found here.
Dear UC Davis Community,
As you know, the task force led by former California Supreme Court Associate Justice Cruz Reynoso has made public its findings and recommendations. The report and all associated background materials have been posted on our website: http://reynosoreport.ucdavis.edu/reynoso-report.pdf
I want to thank Justice Reynoso and each member of the task force for investing such extraordinary effort. I also thank President Yudof for establishing an external review.
I am gratified that the Reynoso report is available to all of us as we continue efforts to make UC Davis a model for tolerance, inclusivity and constructive, spirited dialogue. We all can learn from the difficult events of last November; this report will help us do that.
We will immediately begin to study and assess the report’s recommendations and develop a detailed response and action plan.
I intend to have a preliminary draft of our plan to share with the campus community as quickly as possible. There will be numerous ways for you to comment.
Let me assure you that in doing so, we will ensure that students’ safety and free-speech rights are paramount.
Linda P.B. Katehi
Here you can find a PDF (190 pages) of the Reynoso Task Force Report on the Pepper Spray Incident of November 18th last year.
Section I – Deficiencies in the Decision- Making Process and Substantive Mistakes at the Administrative Level
A. There Was a Failure to Investigate Whether or Not “Non- Affiliates” in the UC Davis Occupy Encampment Were present
B. The Administration Decided to Deploy Police to Remove the Tents on Nov. 18 before Considering Other Reasonable Alternatives
C. The Scope of the Police Operation to Remove the Tents Was Ineffectively Communicated, Not Clearly Understood by Key Decision- Makers, and, Accordingly, Could Not Be Adequately Evaluated as to Its Costs and Consequences
D. There Were No Clear Lines Delineating the Responsibility for Decision- Making between Civilian Administrators and Police
E. There Was Confusion as to the Legal Basis for the Police Operation
F. The Leadership Team’s Informal, Consensus- Based Decision- Making Process Was Ineffective for Supporting a Major Extraordinary Event
Section II – The Conduct of the Police Operation
A. The UCDPD Failed to Plan for the Intended Action According to Standard Operating Procedures
B. Notwithstanding the Deficiencies in the Operations Plan, the Incident Was Not Managed According to the Plan
C. The Decision to Use Pepper Spray Was Not Supported by Objective Evidence and Was Not Authorized by Policy
D. The Pepper Spray Used, the MK- 9, First Aerosol Projector, Was Not an Authorized Weapon for Use by the UCDPD
E. There is a Breakdown of Leadership in the UCDPD
F. Other Police Procedural and Tactical Irregularities
Section III – Individual Responsibility
A. The Chancellor Bears Primary Responsibility for the Decision to Deploy the Police at 3 p.m. Rather than During the Night or Early Morning, Which is a Tactical Decision Properly Reserved for Police Authorities
B. The Chancellor Bears Primary Responsibility for the Failure to Communicate Her Position that the Police Operation Should Avoid Physical Force
C. Many Members of the Leadership Team, Including the Chancellor, Vice Chancellor Meyer, and Vice Chancellor Wood, Share Responsibility for the Decision to Remove the Tents on Friday and, as a Result, the Subsequent Police Action Against Protesters
D. Chief Spicuzza Bears Individual Responsibility for Failing to Challenge the Leadership Team’s Decision on the Time of the Police Operation and for Not Clarifying the Role the Police Were Expected to Play During the Operation. She is also Responsible for Numerous Deviations from Best Police Practices Both Before and During the Operation as Detailed in the Kroll Report
E. Officer P [name removed from document upon request] Bears Individual Responsibility for Abdicating his Duties as Incident Commander
F. Lt. Pike Bears Primary Responsibility for the Objectively Unreasonable Decision to Use Pepper Spray on the Students Sitting in a Line and for the Manner in Which the Pepper Spray Was Used
Section IV – Recommendations
A. Recommendations for the Administration and Leadership Response
B. Recommendations for the UC Davis Police
C. Recommendations for System- Wide Consideration
D. Recommendation for the Campus Community
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 9, 2012
University of California Office of the President
UC Davis Task Force to outline findings, recommendations on Wednesday, April 11
The task force looking into the pepper-spray incident at UC Davis today (April 9) tentatively scheduled public release of its report and recommendations for the afternoon of Wednesday, April 11, at the University of California, Davis. The task force rescheduled the public release after attorneys for UC and the police union jointly asked an Alameda County Superior Court judge to lift a stay he had imposed.
Pending the judge’s ruling after a hearing scheduled for Tuesday, April 10, the task force now plans to outline its findings and recommendations to the UC Davis community – students, faculty and staff – on Wednesday, April 11, from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. in Freeborn Hall at UC Davis.
The downloadable task force findings, recommendations and background documents are tentatively scheduled to be available beginning at noon April 11 on the UC Davis home page, www.ucdavis.edu. A live webcast of the public meeting will also be accessible from the campus home page, and audio will be broadcast live outside Freeborn Hall.
Former California Supreme Court Associate Justice Cruz Reynoso, chair of the task force, postponed public release of the task force report and the accompanying report from the Kroll consulting group, originally scheduled for March 6, after the union representing UC campus police officers requested a court order to halt public disclosure of the report.
Alameda County Superior Court Judge Evelio Grillo issued a ruling that cleared the way for public disclosure of nearly the entire report, except for names of some campus police officers, but imposed a stay until April 20 to allow police union attorneys time to prepare an appeal.
At the request of UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi, UC President Mark G. Yudof formed the task force on Nov. 21, 2011, and named Reynoso, professor emeritus at the UC Davis School of Law, as the chair. In addition to Reynoso, the task force members are mainly members of the UC Davis community, nominated by relevant constituencies.
Open letter to UC community from President Yudof
I write today to address, once again, the moral and ethical imperative for all of our University of California students, faculty and staff members to foster a climate of tolerance, civility and open-mindedness. I am prompted to do so because of a number of recent incidents that undermine this imperative.
University campuses are proper venues for collisions of ideas and viewpoints. Conflicting viewpoints not only are inevitable but also healthy in this context.
What is not acceptable are acts meant to disrupt the speech of others. What is not acceptable are hate-driven physical and, yes, verbal attacks on any group or individual that are meant to silence or intimidate those who would express differing opinions.
It was wrong for hecklers to disrupt speakers on the UC Davis campus at an event entitled “Israeli Soldiers Speak Out.” It was reprehensible that one of these hecklers accused the speakers of being associated with rapists and murders. Under the direction of Chancellor Katehi, campus officials dealt appropriately with this individual, moving him out of the room and barring re-entry. But I want to make this clear: I condemn the actions of those who would disrupt this event. Attempting to shout down speakers is not protected speech. It is an action meant to deny others their right to free speech.
It was wrong for a vandal or vandals on the UC Riverside campus to deface the Israeli flag displayed by the Jewish student organization Hillel, scrawling the word “terrorists” across it. I applaud Chancellor White for his rapid and vigorous condemnation of this cowardly act. And I join him whole heartedly in that condemnation. The chancellor was right to assign campus police to investigate.
Two years ago, at UC San Diego, it was African Americans who were vilified by words and images that mocked their heritage and who felt threatened by the hanging of a noose. Around the same time, derogatory and profane words were spray-painted across the entrance to the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Resource Center at UC Davis. Likewise, swastikas scrawled on campus walls or doors have made Jewish students feel unsafe.
Since then, among other initiatives, the system’s central office has worked with the campuses and various groups, including students, to revise policies on student conduct; the new provisions strengthen prohibitions on threatening conduct and acts motivated by bias, including religious bias. We also are working with the Museum of Tolerance and the Anti-Defamation League to improve campus climate for all students and to take full advantage of our marvelous diversity.
Still, despite diligent efforts, we cannot say – and, realistically, never will be able to say – that hateful incidents won’t occur in a community made up of 235,000 students and 185,000 employees. There inevitably will be speakers or forums that present ideas others will view as hateful and abhorrent. Hateful incidents will not be tolerated and I stand ready to condemn them whenever and wherever they occur, as should all members of the UC community.
As for incendiary speakers, we cannot as a society allow what we regard as vile speech to lead us to abandon the cherished value of free speech. But the same Constitution that permits some public figures to engage in hateful commentary also protects my right and duty – and your right and duty – to condemn these merchants of hatred when they come into our community. Again, the best remedy for bad speech is to surround it with good speech.
Finally, it is important that we keep our eyes on the prize. What we collectively are trying to preserve is a vibrant and vocal university community that is not afraid to explore or even argue about ideas, that is not afraid to make stands on controversial issues, that is not afraid of discourse, but one that embraces the ethic of doing so in a spirit of respect and civility.
With our Chancellors, I remain committed to the principle of balancing protection of free speech and promoting strategies to foster an environment where all students, faculty, staff members and guests can feel safe and respected – no matter their individual characteristics or viewpoints.
Mark G. Yudof
Dear UC Davis Community,
The UC Office of the President announced late Monday that Tuesday’s anticipated release of the Reynoso Task Force report has been postponed. You can read the full announcement here:
I am tremendously disappointed by this delay and know that many of you will be as well. We requested this inquiry to learn precisely what happened last November 18, utilize that knowledge to ensure that our campus is a safe, tolerant and inclusive community, and help us move forward together.
Hopefully, this delay will be brief and we will receive the task force’s findings soon. Meanwhile, work continues as we near completion of the campus’s own internal affairs investigation into complaints of officer misconduct, which would be the basis for any personnel actions concerning the accused officers.
Linda P.B. Katehi
It would have been nice if a date was set for when the internal affairs investigation is to be made public (and that this date was actually adhered to).