WORCESTER – Clark University asked the Law Offices of Bowditch and Dewey LLP to conduct an independent review of the arrests made during a protest in Worcester on Monday, June 1.
Four Clark students were among the 19 arrested by Worcester Police.
Clark University President David P. Angel and President-elect David Fithian pledged an investigation in a statement the day following the arrests and also criticized some police department actions.
Bowditch & Dewey Chairman Michael Angelini and Partner Peter Martin wrote a letter to Angel and Fithian to express the review’s main findings. The evidence considered by reviewers included video, photographs and many interviews.
The reviewers agreed that a group of protesters became violent around 9:30 PM and worsened shortly after 10 PM.
The report concedes that one could question the deployment of the Worcester Police Department Tactical Unit as the appropriate, given the scope of the situation. However, the deployment was consistent with protocols.
Investigators say they did not find evidence any of the students from Clark acted violently or destructively.
The report concludes by acknowledging that arrests are not polite affairs but the use of force should be limited to only the amount which enables the arrest.
Reviewers concluded that actions taken during the arrests of the Clark students did not meet that standard.