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Berkeley cops to be re-trained per settlement over wrongful student protest arrest

Posted: July 12, 2012 |   Comments

OAKLAND, Calif. (CN) - A photojournalist will collect $162,000 to settle claims that police officers at University of California, Berkeley, wrongfully arrested him and illegally seized his camera after a student protest.

David Morse, 43, says he was covering an unrelated assignment at Berkely on Dec. 11, 2009, when he noticed students marching toward the residence of UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau. He allegedly began following the group and taking photographs, but was later arrested by UCPD officers.

"Rather than pursue the fleeing demonstrators, many of whom had their faces covered, the police car pulled up directly in front of Morse," his federal complaintsaid. "UCPD officers Manchester and Wyckoff exited the vehicle and briskly approached Morse. As they approached, Officer Wyckoff shouted, 'I saw you take a picture of us. We want your camera. We believe your camera contains evidence of a crime.'"

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