NEW YORK -- Newly released emails show University of California, Berkeley officials did not initially object to the use of batons on nonviolent protesters during a November 2011 demonstration that ignited a national outrage.
Chancellor Robert Bigeneau not only knew batons were used against Occupy Cal protesters, but he encouraged officials "do not back down."
Birgeneau said at the time he was in "limited contact" with administration officials when students began an Occupy Cal protest at the UC Berkley campus on Nov. 9, 2011, while he was in Asia. Campus police were caught on video striking protesters who had linked arms and were standing still.
Emails sent to and from Birgeneau's account, obtained through a Freedom of Information request by the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California and shared with The Huffington Post, show Birgeneau was told that campus police had used batons, and that he did not call for a more passive approach in enforcing a "no encampments" policy.