Ex-UC Davis officer: Warned campus about excessive force

1:12 AM, Nov 23, 2011   |    comments
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DAVIS, CA - A former UC Davis police officer, who sued the university after he was fired, said he warned the department and the administration repeatedly about the use of excessive force.

"We're talking about an agency that has a majority of very good officers and a few officers who engage in misconduct," former officer Calvin Chang said.

Chang said he tried to tell higher-ups about issues within the department on numerous occasions.

"Specifically, allegations of excessive force, which I reported to the university and to it's attorneys and it appears nothing was done about that," Chang said.

Chang sued the university in 2003, claiming he was called an extreme homophobic slur by his superior officer John Pike, and that he was subjected to harassment within the department.

Chang eventually won a $250,000 settlement, but ended up suing the university again when, he claims, they violated an agreement to expunge certain negative information from his records.

Pike is now a lieutenant with the UC Davis Police Department and is the officer who can be seen dousing protestors with pepper spray on video shot at the university quad last Friday.

"When I saw that, I was as shocked as anybody else, but not surprised when I realized who it was," Chang said. "Every police officer should know students have a right, citizens have a right to assemble and to peacefully protest. And they should not be met with violence."

Chang said he hopes the incident will bring better oversight of the department and institutional change at the university.

"They need to have somebody in the administration that has the authority that will oversee and supervise the police department, not just rubber stamp whatever they do," Chang said.


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