Three UC Berkeley students and an alumnus who were arrested while participating in an Occupy Cal protest last year were issued stay away orders by a judge Tuesday, barring them from campus except when going to class.
The four defendants were arraigned Tuesday at the Wiley Manuel Courthouse in downtown Oakland on misdemeanor charges of resisting arrest and blocking the sidewalk for their involvement in a demonstration at Sproul Plaza on Nov. 9.
At the request of the Alameda County District Attorney's Office, Superior Court Judge Paul Seeman issued orders which require that the protesters stay away 100 yards from all UC property, except for when they go to and from class and work.
Students with Occupy Cal had tried to set up tents in the plaza but were shut down by police.
In all 13 protesters were arrested and Seeman issued stay away orders for eight of them.
While speaking to reporters, one of the defendants, Cal Alumna Yvette Felarca, described the charges against her and three other students as being politically motivated.
"It's nothing but an attempt to try to censor our right to criticize policies by the administration and by the governor," said Felarca.
Four more student protesters were scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday and they could be issued the same stay away orders.
Attorneys for the protesters were already challenging the orders Tuesday and would work to have them lifted at hearing on April 2.
"The problems with the stay away order are that it’s very vague. UC property – does that include UC hospitals? Does that include UC housing? We have some defendants that live in UC Housing,” said Jeff Wozniak, an attorney for one of the protesters.
KTVU contacted the Alameda County District Attorney's Office to ask about the case and the stay away orders but a spokeswoman there said the office wouldn't comment on pending cases.
Watchdogs are questioning an exclusive agreement between the City of Oakland and a non-profit group, tapped to lead a multi-million dollar project to redevelop the area around the Coliseum BART station.