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UC Davis head tells lawmakers no spraying ordered

  • FILE - In this file photo from Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2011, University of California-Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi, left, tries to address students gathered at the Occupy UC Davis encampment on the campus in Davis, Calif. Katehi, the first woman chancellor of the University of California, Davis, has found herself in the middle of national debate over use of pepper spray and has issued two apologies to the student body over the force campus police used on Occupy Wall Street protesters. Resisting calls for her resignation, she initiated inquiries into the episode and now is bracing for a protests at a UC Regents meeting on her campus Monday. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, file)

SACRAMENTO — The University of California, Davis, chancellor said Wednesday that she never ordered campus police to use force or pepper spray on students last month, as lawmakers began a broader inquiry over of how colleges have responded to non-violent Occupy protests.

UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi reasserted that she played no direct role in officers pepper-spraying students on Nov. 18. Katehi accepted responsibility for what happened but said would feel uncomfortable providing tactical orders to police.

Currently, the campus police chief reports to a vice chancellor.

"Should I be the one to provide tactical directions? Unless I know as a person of the specifics of law enforcement, I would never think that the chancellor would be in the right position to prescribe tactically what should happen," Katehi said.

Assemblyman Marty Block, a San Diego Democrat and chairman of the Assembly Higher Education Committee, asked Katehi what she would have done differently that day.


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