University of California Paying $1 Million to Students Who Were Pepper Sprayed


After 10 months of investigations, angry demands and lawsuits, the final chapter in the pepper-spray saga at the University of California, Davis, was written Wednesday with the announcement of a $1 million settlement, the Sacramento Bee reports. The payout for the students pepper-sprayed during a Nov. 18 campus demonstration: $30,000 each – about the cost of attending the school for a year – and a written apology from UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi.

The payouts for the lawyers, consultants, and others who dealt with the messy aftermath? Quite a bit more. The final bill likely will exceed $2 million, with the $1 million settlement deal covered by the university system’s self-insurance program. One of the additional items was $230,256 for an internal affairs investigation into the actions of Lt. John Pike, one of two campus police officers who deployed the pepper spray. Pike ultimately was fired. Police Chief Annette Spicuzza retired in April after an independent panel issued a critical report on her management of both the department and the incident. All this occurred because campus police were sent out to remove tents set up on the university quad during a days-long demonstration against rising tuition costs.

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