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Security Guard and Police Confiscate a Backpack on Science Hill

by ~Bradley (bradley [at]
On January 10th, a tree-sitter on Science Hill at UC Santa Cruz dangled a lime green shopping bag from a platform high up in a redwood, presumably with the desire of receiving food, dry clothing and other supplies for occupying the crown of a coastal redwood during a stormy winter. UC police officers stood below the trees to prevent people from sharing with tree-sitters. A security guard also confiscated a backpack from under a tree and then turned it over to the police. UCSC has resorted to a diversity of tactics in trying to end the tree-sit which has been ongoing since November 7th, 2007, including police intimidation and violence, public relations lies and propaganda, and seeking a court injunction against named and unnamed individuals.
The previous night, January 9th, two people were violently arrested on Science Hill. You can learn more about those arrests here:

Eyewitness Report of Police Attacking Two People at UCSC

For more information about the tree-sit on Science Hill against UCSC expansion, see:

Winter Break at the UCSC Tree-sit

Santa Cruz Community Supports Tree-sitters

Standoff with Police as Activists Occupy Redwoods to Oppose UCSC Expansion
by ~Bradley
§Trash Orchestra
by ~Bradley
§Engine Fire
by ~Bradley
UCSC firefighters responded to a car engine fire on McLaughlin Drive on Science Hill.
by ~Bradley
A security guard confiscates a backpack.
§T. Contreras
by ~Bradley
Officer T. Contreras took the backpack from in front of the truck and placed it into the trunk of a UC police car.
§Under Constant Surveillance Cameras (UCSC)
by ~Bradley
§Situation Here
by ~Bradley
by ~Bradley
§Brain Hughes and a Security Guard
by ~Bradley
For more information on Brian Hughes, see:

cop watch: Brian Hughes at LRDP Protest
§Locked Out
by ~Bradley
Entry At Loading Dock Only
With Valid UCSC ID
by ~Bradley
§Yes Boss
by ~Bradley
by ~Bradley
UCSC has published documents for their case which you can download and read on their website. Laminated pages were also left below the tree-sits.
Documents filed in Case #158919:
§Tree 2
by ~Bradley
§Tree 1
by ~Bradley
§Tree 4
by ~Bradley
§Stop UCSC Expansion
by ~Bradley
Add Your Comments

Comments (Hide Comments)
by sitter
Because like you, they care about the upper campus forest.
Like you, they understand that expansion means higher rents and more traffic in town.
Like you, they care about undergraduate education and see value in vanishing liberal arts.
Like you, they came here for more than science vocational training.

by James Omista
I wonder if the local students and other supporters are aware of the mass destruction and construction in other areas of California. I wonder if they are aware that we have gone to war with a country that has NO weapons of mass destruction? I wonder if they question the attack of 911? I wonder why they waste their time on a university that is SO far ahead of other campuses in terms of green buildings, green surroundings, etc.

The reason... they are lazy, and UCSC is an easy target that tolerates such lame and misguided demonstrations. I think it's shallow and self serving.

If you don't like UCSC.. .then go to San Jose State or some other flat, lifeless campus.

by lalala
that most people resisting the LRDP are also against pointless wars among so many other terrible things that happen in the world.

But does this mean we just forget about our community and local goals? Of course not. Because the problems we experience as small towns and communities are direct products of unjust systems, silly wars being fought, corruption...etc!

We like UCSC, and we care! And we are educating ourselves about what is going on in this community. People who care, and who educate others should NOT go to San Jose State, unless they care a lot about that place. Desiring change usually means you care about it, not that you hate it
by lalala
it's not only about being "green"'s about the increased corporate/private funding and agenda of a PUBLIC institution, its about the people who wont be able to afford to live here anymore (gentrification), it's about environmental destruction, it's about quality of education.

by Alan Rockefeller
Before I saw this article, I was undecided about the tree sitters, and I was unsure that they were spending their resources wisely. But after seeing the police violence and underhanded tactics they employ, I am all for them.

I am going to print out a bunch of the flyers above and post them at the fungus fair tomorrow.
by Who has the shady tactics?
The tree sitters, IMO, have used the same questionable tactics and suspect credibility during the course of this situation.

-There has been rampant graffiti on campus since the tree sit started. Spraypainting in bathrooms, on bridges, utility boxes, etc.

-Staff cars were vandalized in the first few days.

And then the worst and latest, on Dec. 17th. That was the the day that the ground support camp was cleaned out by the campus. (After students voluntarily left, the campus brought in a contractor to clean up the area. Primarily tree detritus, but also some of the branches used to make huts, and some signs.)

It's reported in this weeks Metro News. The contractor who did that cleanup, who is based in Watsonville, had his work yard assaulted the same night that followed the cleanup. His vehicle tires were slashed, and spray paint graffiti read "Stay off of UCS(B)C.

Yeah, they didn't even spell it right. They initially sprayed UCSB, then corrected it to read UCSC. And I'm supposed to believe these are local students.

Or maybe I should believe the spokeswoman for the tree sitters, who in the same article stated that it wasn't people affiliated with the tree sit who did the vandalizing? How far must I stretch my imagination to accept that theory? Am I to think an anonymous person took advantage of the situation and did it on a lark? Or that UC did it to create bad press for the tree sitters?

My belief: The tree sitters are engaging in tactics as crappy as the UCSC police. And they're primarily NOT UCSC students. They're imports who don't live here, and can't even remember what campus they're purporting to represent and defend.

I wish they'd go back to Berkeley and quit this stupid grandstanding.
by John R.
I live here and have for 15 years. I got my degree at UCSC (two of 'em), and now work there. I support the tree sitters and have brought food for the people in the trees and on the ground. I support the tree sit and am tired of stranding by to see this place that I love destroyed.

I've never slashed tires or fought with police, but I appreciate that a fight sometimes takes many forms and has many fronts.
by nr5667
Oh, how shameful, a few trees being cut to the ground to make way for for science buildings...

...If the best that liberals arts at UCSC can produce are tree sitters with poorly formed arguments then perhaps UCSC should phase it out.
by Who has the shady tactics?
I've lived here for 3 decades.
I worked up there.
I don't want to see a place I love destroyed either...although I differ with you as to whether this expansion = destruction.

But I entirely disagree with you that a fight takes many forms and fronts, if you're suggesting that an acceptable front is to vandalize, destroy property, and try to intimidate people. (That is how I perceived your post; was that what you meant?)

If those are considered acceptable tactics by the tree sitters, then how can they make any complaint about anything done to them in return. Are you suggesting that you consider those acceptable tactics?
by ZL
I just want to point out that, "UCSB" is University of California Santa Barbara, not UC Berkeley. The allegation (originating with Dennis Williams of Williams Tree Service, published by the Metro, and parroted in the comment section of Indymedia) that the tree-sitters and those acting in solidarity with them are non-locals--specifically from Berkeley--is based on faulty logic and mere speculation. The presence of the letter "B" following "UCS," promptly corrected to a "C," does not necessarily mean as much as tabloid journalists suggest.
Berkley or UCSB or wherever...I doubt they're the local student body.
by Class of 95
Yet, of the people named in the civil suit, several are alumni and most are students. The administration would love to portray that the people sitting in the trees aren't their students. Our students would never be so uncivil as to resist the expansion of our university. They must be foreigners!

This kind of echoes the Bush administration's assertions that the insurgence in Iraq were all Syrian or Iranian fighters. Then it turns out actually, that no, people right there really aren't that keen on having an invading army in their country.

Similarly, the regents, most of whom are not from Santa Cruz, and the corporations funding UC expansion, none of whom are from Santa Cruz, are equally unwelcome here in our forests.

Unwelcome occupation inevitably leads to resistance.
by local
Are any of the people in the trees students or anyone arrested in the last month?
by nr5667
...Afraid not, the forest belongs to the University of California; if you don't want a science facility built (something that might actually contribute to humanity, as opposed to say, professors who aid and abet murderers) you're out of luck.
by Ben
"Unwelcome occupation" ?

Didn't the City of Santa Cruz submit a bid to the UC system asking them to build a campus here? And when the UC system took the city up on that offer the city would of course know that they would be "welcoming" the students and faculty that would follow to live here?

Does anyone have information about the original LRDP? I have heard, from many people, that the campus is currently below the original enrollment levels.
by Emerald
The city of Santa Cruz was very welcoming of UCSC when it opened in 1963. The university economically helped the town a lot from the beginning, bringing in tax dollars and money-spending students and such, and turning it into more than a small sleepy beach/ranch town where the bay area's rich vacationed. Later in the 70's, the city however learned more about this new entity, they forsaw the effects that an ever-increasing student population brought... paired with the higher demand for housing and elements of the city's infrastructure was the university's seemingly untouchable position... as a state institution, it was easy for the university to push the city around. People of the town became less welcoming of the university because they saw where this is going.
Besides, no matter the relationship 30 years ago, things have changed.

So essentially the university wants all the benefits of being a part of this city, without taking on any of the responsibilites for its own actions. This does NOT mean that the university hasn't postively affected Santa Cruz in many ways.
by Ben
I guess where I was going with my question is that, possibly, the city did not think their request and desire through in it's entirety. Only problem is that the city, and it's citizens, entered into a contract with full knowledge of possible growth plans. It's a difficult situation but in a way a case of "buyers remorse".

It's, in a way, similar to deciding to have a child. You know it's going to be hard sometimes. But after having it you realize that you didn't know how hard. Only thing is, you can't give it back. You still have to nurture it, watch it grow, hope you can make it the best it can be. Sometimes you have to make sacrifice for it's well being. In the end you hope it will also treat you well.

But if you fight it, don't allow it to mature and realize it's potential, try to keep it small and under your control, it will retaliate. Open communication is important. Managing expectations is also important. It looks like, to me, that UCSC is doing what it said it would from the start. It laid out goals and expectations, with clarity, and now some in the city have decided they want to change the rules.

Temper tantrums, on either part, are going to get this nowhere. And as all of this goes to court, that original contract is going to be held up.
by November
I had no idea that vandals had such a stake in keeping Williams tree service out of Santa Barbara.
by Emerald
Yeah I understand, but I would say that I disagree. I don't think that the city is necessarily trying to limit the university in reaching it's full potential. I would say that in terms of expansion, there is going to be a time when we, as a learning community, should say that enough is enough, because look at where we are... In the middle of the redwoods! There are so many places to expand in California, it is just not logical to expand in this area. Not only because we are in the middle of the forest, but also because there are no logical and responsible plans for PHYSICAL expansion. It is easy to say that UCSC needs to grow in terms of student population size, but there are physical limits to this small town, (and really ANY town) and I think that the university needs to understand and be sensitive to this. We as a community (especially those who are raising families here, and such) should be able to say enough growth is enough!

But, let's be real here. The UC is not concerned with the well being of this town and the communities growing within it. What ever brings in more money is what's desirable to those making important decisions revolving around expansion.

So basically what I am trying to say is that many people are not completely opposed to expansion in general, but the way it is currently (and in the past) planned out. And if we are unhappy about the way something is working within the uni, usually working through the system doesn't work. We, as students (well I am a student, I am not sure about you) do not have the time to work through all the bureaucratic loops in order to make tiny changes, and this is where the so-called "temper tantrums" come in. (Which I would call direct action, not temper tantrums). Communication is nice, when it can happen, but as someone coming from trying to talk with admin and police force, I can tell you that it is not worth it. These people are not people anymore. They are playing certain roles ("just doing their jobs") and there is no point in trying to engage with them.

Trust me, I've tried.
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