Californian Occupy protesters pepper sprayed

Video goes viral

The police chief and two officers at the University of California are on leave after a video emerged online that shows riot police pepper spraying peacefully-seated protesters on Friday.

Police had been ordered to clear the tents of Occupy Wall Street protesters who had built an encampment on campus the night before. The university had given occupiers letters of eviction the following day. Eleven students were injured by the pepper spray and two went to hospital for chemical burns. Ten protesters were arrested.

“Yesterday was not a day that would make anyone on our campus proud; indeed the events of the day need to guide us forward as we try to make our campus a better place of inquiry, debate, and even dissent,” Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi wrote in a statement online. She has announced a task-force to look into the incident.

There are three million views of the top three YouTube videos of the spraying, including this one.