93 arrested at USC following pro-Palestinian protest: police

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Thursday, April 25, 2024
LAPD makes arrests following pro-Palestinian protest at USC
A rally by pro-Palestinian demonstrators turned chaotic Wednesday at USC's Alumni Park, as campus police and the LAPD confronted protesters.

LOS ANGELES -- Police arrested 93 people on and around the University of Southern California campus, mostly on misdemeanor trespass Wednesday night.

The university declared the campus closed in the afternoon, open only to students with their USC IDs at pedestrian gates, due to what USC said "significant activity at the center of campus."

On Wednesday night, LAPD Captain Kelly Muniz told ABC News that around 35 protesters had been processed for misdemeanor trespass. Several dozen more were waiting to be processed, Muniz said.

There was an altercation in one portion of the protest area that resulted in one arrest for assault with a deadly weapon, according to Muniz.

There are no known injuries to police or protesters.

The arrests at USC come after police at a Texas university aggressively detained dozens in the latest clashes between law enforcement and those protesting the Israel-Hamas war on campuses nationwide.

While tensions rose between police and protesters at USC earlier in the day, in the evening a few dozen demonstrators standing in a circle with locked arms were detained one by one without incident.

Police officers encircled the dwindling group, which sat in defiance of an earlier warning to disperse or be arrested. Beyond the police line, hundreds of onlookers watched as helicopters buzzed overhead. The school closed the campus.

Last week, USC canceled the valedictorian's speech out of safety concerns considering her pro-Palestinian views, sparking backlash. The student, Asna Tabassum, is a first-generation South Asian-American Muslim who majored in biomedical engineering and minored in resistance to genocide, according to a statement published through the Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

A rally by pro-Palestinian demonstrators turned chaotic at USC's Alumni Park, as police confronted protesters who attempted to set up an encampment on campus.

Dozens of students and others have issued a list of demands, including the university's divestment, similar to demands from students on other campuses, according to sister station KABC.

The arrests at USC arrived hours after police at the University of Texas at Austin aggressively took 34 demonstrators. It was the latest clash between law enforcement and those protesting the Israel-Hamas war on campuses nationwide.

The actions across the U.S. came after Columbia University averted another confrontation between students and police earlier in the day.

DEVELOPING: More details will be added to this report as they become available.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.