Four residents from the Bay Area of California were injured while the violent protests were going on carried out by the University of California-Berkley last year as Milo Yiannopoulos appeared in the campus, went on to file a lawsuit last Thursday, saying that the administration had failed to provide proper security measures to protect the attendees from harm.
The injured, John Jennings, Katrina Redelsheimer, Trever Hatch, and Donald Fletcher, in their lawsuit, said that they were attacked by masked men when they went to attend the speaking session of Yiannopoulous in February 2017, in UC-Berkley. The complaint says that the university is “responsible for creating and exposing the Plaintiffs to the unlawful actions of an angry mob of violent anarchists.”
Furthermore, the University along with the UC Board of Regents, UC president Janet Napolitano, and both of the UC Chancellors, Carol Christ and the chancellor at that time, Nicholas Dirks; the administrator from student affairs, the UC Police Department Chief of Police, the city of Berkley as well as the Police Department were all named Defendants.
The plaintiffs further claim that “given the current political climate,” the University should have “foreseen that the protest of a controversial political figure such as Yiannopolous could likely turn violent.” Yet, it failed to “plan effectively,” according to the suit, furthermore, the police also failed to “intervene or employ reasonable tactical methods to ensure the safety of the plaintiffs” while the riots gained momentum.
The Officers too issued, “feckless disbursal orders and empty threats of arrest,” the complaint provided details and had barricaded the areas that were flooded with protesters, leaving no exits open for the plaintiffs and other attendees to escape.
This caused the black-clad “antifa” demonstrators to set university property on fire and loot the local establishments too, causing an estimated damage of $100,000. The event was hence canceled, but only one arrest was made.
The complaint said that Jennings was beaten unconscious, while Redelsheimer and Hatch were “brutally assaulted” with the pepper-spray and a flagpole, which references of the visual evidence of the assaults, including the social media footage of the incidents posted by their attackers.
The plaintiffs are now being represented by Shawn Steel of the Shawn Steel Law Firm, a lawyer who had previously served as the chairman of the California Republican National Committee.
Steel has characterized these clashes on campus between the students of differing ideologies as “the Left’s Jihad against the conservatives,” in an email. He further said that he took on the Berkeley case as “I believe it is my duty as an officer of the court and as a free speech absolutist is to defend vulnerable student conservatives. Universities that cannot protect free speech is a university not worthy of any public support.”
His clients now are seeking the compensation for their medical bills, and for strict security policies to be altered in order to properly protect the “attendees of all future political rallies” in the city from the rioters’ violence.