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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: East Bay | Animal Liberation | Education & Student Activism | Police State and Prisons
UCPD's war on animal rights activists continues
The University of California's war on activists continues
UCPD's war on animal rights activists, designed to intimidate and silence the voices of those who speak up for the 40,000 animals currently exploited in UC-Berkeley laboratories, continues.
The below report was sent in to us, and is especially relevant in light of the University of California's current plans: the building of the 267-million dollar Li Ka-Shing Center for Biomedical and Health Sciences at University Avenue and Oxford Way on the UC Berkeley campus that will include a 70 percent expansion of the vivisection facilities, UC-Santa Cruz's plan for construction of a "biomedical" facility that would vastly expand vivisection at the university, UC-Irvine's construction of a new vivisection laboratory, etc.
Joseph was arrested by a Berkeley PD officer in mid-December on a trespassing warrant. This was his third activism related arrest in just over a year. The warrant was issued December 12, 2008. The crime is alleged to have occurred "or or about July 10, 2008," some five months earlier! His backpack was searched by a smiling UCPD officer, who searched and called in that it was "negative on molotov cocktails and weapons of mass destruction."
All of his belongings were again combed through, searched, photographed, and seized by Berkeley PD officer O'Donnell, who on arrival at the jail, called the police chief and reported the arrest on this, the crime of the century - a 5 month old misdemeanor trespassing warrant for which no details are offered. O'Donnell even requested the jail surveillance video from the deputies. All of Joseph's belongings were seized as "evidence of a suspicious circumstance," including a pair of gloves, a bike lock, and a book! Even his library cards were taken, though not listed on the evidence report and likely "lost."
As he sat in his cell, UCPD officers S. Reich and Detective Kasiske entered. They accused him of putting a false address on his booking form. Joseph again stated his address. The officers again accused him of lying. Detective Kasiske then became visibly agitated and stated "Just so you know, this warrant is from back in July. So keep it up. The vandalism. The e-mail. All of the bullshit. It will catch up with you sooner or later!"
Joseph will have many court dates on the trespassing charge over the coming months. He's confident he'll be found not guilty.
In addition, Joseph reports that Downtown Berkeley market owners have made him aware that officers visited their establishments a "couple months ago" showing his picture, asking if they had seen him, and alleging that he was responsible for some type of vandalism to shops in the area. Joseph was detained by seven officers over 15 months ago! with similar accusations. His belongings were searched. There was no evidence of any wrong-doing and the officers let him go.
By bringing up old crimes for which Joseph had no part in, it is obvious over-zealous BPD and UCPD (who function as hired security guards for the UC Regents political agenda) are looking to try and pin anything on him to intimidate those who would effectively stand up for non-human animals. Stay tuned on how you can support Joseph if this local mini-Green Scare heats up.
On Monday, the District Attorney requested and the judge instituted an unconstitutional 100-yard stayaway order which states that Joseph can not go within 100 yards of the Browning ST. residence of UC Berkeley bird torturer Frederic Theunissen, who bolts songbirds into stereotaxic devices, incises their skulls, and inserts electrodes deep into their brains for brain-recording, and then kills them after their life as "research subjects."
The stayaway order is being contested and his next court date on the trespassing charge is not until March.