5 arrested at rally against Ann Coulter speech in Berkeley
Berkeley, Calif. – A person was injured and five people were arrested during a demonstration by hundreds of people outside a University of California, Berkeley auditorium where conservative commentator Ann Coulter gave a speech, an official said Thursday.
Between 1,500 and 2,000 demonstrators chanted slogans outside the event. Some harassed people trying to enter the building, yelling at them and pushing them.
A person who had a ticket to the event was injured after getting in a scuffle with a protester and taken to a hospital to be checked as a precautionary measure, said Dan Mogulof, a spokesman for the university.
“We don’t believe the injuries were serious,” he said.
UC Berkeley police arrested three people for not following officers’ orders and one for battery on an officer, Mogulof said. He said he did not know what the fifth protester was arrested for.
Police said several of those arrested were wearing masks, and Mogulof said officials don’t believe they are students.
Police put up a large wall and a water-filled heavy barricade around the building, keeping protesters as well as audience members from getting inside for some time.
A woman in the audience who began yelling during Coulter’s Wednesday night speech titled “Adiós, America!” was handcuffed by security and taken out of the event, KPIX-TV reported.
A scheduled appearance by Coulter didn’t take place in 2017 in the wake of violence before a scheduled talk by another right-wing speaker, Milo Yiannopoulos, when dozens of black-clad anarchists appeared among the crowd and attacked people. They later vandalized businesses near the campus.
A lawsuit accused the university of discriminating against conservative speakers. UC Berkeley has called the lawsuit’s accusation unsubstantiated.