At Cal Poly Humboldt, police arrested 25 protesters and ended the takeover

Police officers arrested 25 protesters early Tuesday, ending an occupation of the administration building at California State Polytechnic University in Humboldt that forced a campus shutdown.

The university said in a statement that the 25 persons have been charged with various charges including unlawful assembly, vandalism, conspiracy and assaulting police officers.

“The event is not free expression or protest,” the university said. “This was a criminal act, and there were serious concerns that it would spread further on campus.”

Protesters occupied Siemens Hall on April 22 and renamed it “Intifada Hall”. They resisted the police's initial attempt to remove them, and later rejected increasingly strong pleas from officers to leave the building. Siemens Hall houses the university president's office, which the protesters also occupied.

On Monday night, campus police at Cal Poly Humboldt tried to disperse the protesters, using loudspeakers to call on about 150 people outside the building to leave and declaring the protest an “unlawful assembly.” Protesters chanted and sang, some linked arms in front of the building.

Around 2:30 a.m., officers from various California agencies arrested the protesters and secured Siemens Hall and a second building, Nelson Hall East.

After occupying the Siemens Hall last week, protesters pitched dozens of tents on the lawns surrounding it. In response, the university closed its entire campus, which is more than 275 miles north of San Francisco. The university said there would be a “hard shutdown” until May 10, a day before the start of the campus.

Protesters He made many demands, the school disclosed its investments in companies that do business in Israel, divested itself from companies that profited from military action in Gaza, cut ties with Israeli universities, and dropped charges against three students arrested at the start of the protests. They also want the university to call for a ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war.

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Cal Poly Humboldt leaders said Friday they are “trying to respond in good faith” to the requests. Hours later, they told students occupying the buildings that they had “the option to leave with the assurance that they will not be arrested immediately.” On Sunday night, the president's team asked students to “peacefully leave campus now,” but did not offer immunity this time.

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