UCLA students plan to hold a protest today in response to university police officers' repeated use of a Taser gun against a student Tuesday, Inside Higher Ed reports, linking to this Facebook announcement of the march. Police hit Mostafa Tabatabainejad four times with a Taser after he failed to provide a student ID card during a random check, the Daily Bruin reports. The Facebook announcement calls on students to join the march "not just because you're Persian/Iranian but because you care about your fellow human beings." A cellphone videotape of the evidence, obtained by the Daily Bruin, gives a detailed account of the library incident.
posted by Sean Sirrine @ 5:40 PM
This is an obvious violation of this UCLA students rights. First, he is tased because he doesn't show the officers his ID. As far as i know there is noe requirement that you show officers your ID unless you are commiting a crim or driving a car. (Unlike Nazi Germany.) Then after he is tased, they continue to use the taser against him because he won't stand up. This is absolute and utter crap. A police officer may use a taser to subdue someone, but cannot use it to make him obey orders once he is subdued.
Here is video of the incident thanks to You Tube and a student with a phone.
Apparently the victim was Muslim. His name is Mostafa Tabatabainejad.
Here is the UCLA's newspaper report in full:
UCPD officers shot a student several times with a Taser inside the Powell Library CLICC computer lab late Tuesday night before taking him into custody.
No university police officers were available to comment further about the incident as of 3 a.m. Wednesday, and no Community Service Officers who were on duty at the time could be reached.
At around 11:30 p.m., CSOs asked a male student using a computer in the back of the room to leave when he was unable to produce a BruinCard during a random check. The student did not exit the building immediately.
The CSOs left, returning minutes later, and police officers arrived to escort the student out. By this time the student had begun to walk toward the door with his backpack when an officer approached him and grabbed his arm, at which point the student told the officer to let him go.
A second officer then approached the student as well.
The student began to yell "get off me," repeating himself several times.
It was at this point that the officers shot the student with a Taser for the first time, causing him to fall to the floor and cry out in pain. The student also told the officers he had a medical condition.
UCPD officers confirmed that the man involved in the incident was a student, but did not give a name or any additional information about his identity.
Video shot from a student's camera phone captured the student yelling, "Here's your Patriot Act, here's your fucking abuse of power," while he struggled with the officers.
As the student was screaming, UCPD officers repeatedly told him to stand up and said "stop fighting us." The student did not stand up as the officers requested and they shot him with the Taser at least once more.
"It was the most disgusting and vile act I had ever seen in my life," said David Remesnitsky, a 2006 UCLA alumnus who witnessed the incident.
As the student and the officers were struggling, bystanders repeatedly asked the police officers to stop, and at one point officers told the gathered crowd to stand back and threatened to use a Taser on anyone who got too close.
Laila Gordy, a fourth-year economics student who was present in the library during the incident, said police officers threatened to shoot her with a Taser when she asked an officer for his name and his badge number. Gordy was visibly upset by the incident and said other students were also disturbed.
"It's a shock that something like this can happen at UCLA," she said. "It was unnecessary what they did."
Immediately after the incident, several students began to contact local news outlets, informing them of the incident, and Remesnitsky wrote an e-mail to Interim Chancellor Norman Abrams.