8 arrested for rioting at UC Berkeley chancellor's home

'These are criminals, not activists,' Birgeneau says

University of California President Mark Yudof offered his support yesterday to UC Berkeley's chancellor after protesters who are angry about budget cuts and fee hikes vandalized his home on campus Friday night.

"The attack on Chancellor (Robert) Birgeneau's residence late last night was appalling," Yudof said in a prepared statement. "The behavior as described went far beyond the boundaries of public dissent, and such lawlessness cannot be tolerated."

At about 11 p.m., 40 to 70 protesters stormed Birgeneau's home on the north side of the campus and smashed planters, windows and lights while shouting, "No justice, no peace," according to the school's Web site. They also reportedly threw flammable objects into the home.

Eight people were arrested for rioting, threatening an education official, attempted burglary, attempted arson of an occupied building, felony vandalism, and assault with a deadly weapon on a police officer, according to UC Berkeley. At least two of the eight arrested are Berkeley students.

Birgeneau is urging the community to find more productive ways of expressing their feelings.

"These are criminals, not activists. The attack at our home was extraordinarily frightening and violent. My wife and I genuinely feared for our lives," Birgeneau said in a statement posted on the university's Web site.

Earlier Friday, 66 protesters who had been occupying Wheeler Hall for several days were arrested for misdemeanor trespassing or resisting arrest.

By the 2010-11 school year, undergraduate fees will increase by more than $2,500, or 32 percent.

Bay City News contributed to this report.

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Like this comment
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Amador Estates
on Dec 13, 2009 at 3:06 pm

Go Berkeley!

Is this the same Bob Birgeneau who used to be on the physics faculty at MIT? If so, I don't feel sorry that his house got trashed. That guy isn't exactly the epitome of academic honesty.

Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Dec 13, 2009 at 3:38 pm

The house belongs to the taxpayers in CA. Chicken-s to trash property that belongs to all of us. Now, we will all have to pay to fix it up! NO TO COOL!

Like this comment
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 13, 2009 at 4:31 pm

Good. I hope they hike tuition more in order to pay for the damages. Then throw those arrested to the students body actually trying to do something productive with their education instead of mindless vandalism.

Like this comment
Posted by dublinmike
a resident of Dublin
on Dec 13, 2009 at 11:33 pm

I am not happy with the UC system tuition increases or the leadership of this intuition but I do not sanction the destruction of any property or the personal threats.

Their actions distract from the message.

Some people are destructive by nature. It doesn't matter what side of the issue they are on... it's all about destroying what you cannot have. It's about them and their "demons." Having stated this, I do not sanction these people.

Like this comment
Posted by SteveP
a resident of Parkside
on Dec 14, 2009 at 10:22 am

SteveP is a registered user.

Only 2 of the eight camps terrorists were students.
In cities like Berserkley and S.F., professional protestors and anarchists are attracted to create needless chaos and destroy public property to satisfy their need for attention.
In the end, student's parents/taxpayers have to foot the bill for the wanton destruction that has no productive purpose.
Makes you wonder where these people were educated and where they went wrong......or why they think this kind of behavior is OK.

Like this comment
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Amador Estates
on Dec 14, 2009 at 11:35 am

What would Berkeley be without protesters? (answer: not Berkeley)

Like this comment
Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Dec 14, 2009 at 12:01 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

I don't condone this sort of violence. The students have every right to be angry though: Web Link

Like this comment
Posted by Milan Moravec
a resident of Willow West
on Dec 14, 2009 at 3:43 pm

$3 Million Extravagant, Arrogant Spending by UC President Yudof for UCBerkeley Chancellor Birgeneau to Hire Consultants - When Work Can Be Done Internally
These days, every dollar counts. Contact Senate (Ms. Romero 916.651.4105) & Assembly (Ms. Brownley 916.319.2044) Chairperson’s Education Committees or your representatives.
Do the work internally at no additional costs with UCB Academic Senate Leadership (C. Kutz/F. Doyle), the world – class UCB faculty/ staff, & the UCB Chancellor’s bloated staff (G. Breslauer, N. Brostrom, F. Yeary, P. Hoffman, C. Holmes etc) & President Yudof.
President Yudof’s UCB Chancellor should do the high paid work he is paid for instead of hiring expensive East Coast consults to do the work of his job. ‘World class’ smart executives like Chancellor Birgeneau need to do the hard work analysis, and make the tough-minded difficult, decisions to identify inefficiencies.
Where do the $3,000,000 consultants get their recommendations?
From interviewing the UCB senior management that hired them and approves their monthly consultant fees and expense reports. Remember the nationally known auditing firm who said the right things and submitted recommendations that senior management wanted to hear and fooled the public, state, federal agencies?
$3 million impartial consultants never bite the hands (Birgeneau/Yeary) that feed them!
Mr. Birgeneau's accountabilities include "inspiring innovation, leading change." This involves "defining outcomes, energizing others at all levels and ensuring continuing commitment." Instead of deploying his leadership and setting a good example by doing the work of his Chancellor’s job, Mr. Birgeneau outsourced his work to the $3,000,000 consultants. Doesn't he engage UC and UC Berkeley people at all levels to examine inefficiencies and recommend $150 million of trims? Hasn't he talked to Cornell and the University of North Carolina - which also hired the consultants -- about best practices and recommendations that will eliminate inefficiencies?
No wonder the faculty, staff, students, Senate & Assembly are angry and suspicious.
In today’s economy three million dollars is a irresponsible price to pay when a knowledgeable ‘world-class’ UCB Chancellor and his bloated staff do not do the work of their jobs.
Together, we will make a difference.

Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Dec 14, 2009 at 7:06 pm

Magaret is Milan's wife. Now I understand the connection.

Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Dec 14, 2009 at 7:46 pm


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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