Outed undercover cop pulls gun on Oakland protesters

by Tynan Krakoff

Black-Lives-Matter-Berkeley-Oakland-march-undercover-cop-beats-arrests-Black-outer-121114-by-Noah-Berger, Outed undercover cop pulls gun on Oakland protesters, Local News & Views
A white undercover police officer, his hand and gun shaking after being spotted and identified as a cop posing as a protester, points his gun at the photographer as his partner wrestles the protester who outed them to the ground and arrests him. The white cop, suspicious for his out-of-date clothes, acted scared and confused, losing the bandana that had masked his face and handling his gun with gangster bravado to conceal his fear. – Photo: Noah Berger, Reuters

A Berkeley-Oakland march protesting police violence following the murders of Mike Brown and Eric Garner ended abruptly late Wednesday night, Dec. 10, after an undercover police officer pulled a gun on protesters and arrested and assaulted the Black man who blew their cover.

The two undercover agents, seen in the photo, were hidden within the crowd of a couple hundred protests who marched from near UC Berkeley to downtown Oakland Wednesday night, including Berkeley High School students who had participated in a mass walk-out that afternoon, in the third week of nightly protests against police violence against people of color and the non-indictment of the white officers who killed Mike Brown and Eric Garner.

The man seen being arrested in the photo had “outed” the undercover cops and, once their covers were blown, a fight broke out and dozens of police officers swarmed in, running so quickly, their helmets, night sticks and other gear were falling to the ground.

We-revolt-because-we-can-no-longer-breathe-Fanon-Oakland-Black-Lives-Matter-march-121114-by-Nick-Radhawa-nicksinghrandhawa, Outed undercover cop pulls gun on Oakland protesters, Local News & Views
From the Frantz Fanon quote on several banners to the faces in the protest crowd, the march Wednesday night was largely Black and other people of color and was Black-led. The numbers were smaller than on previous nights – 100-200 protesters – because of the anticipated “storm of the decade,” the wind already whipping up. Some signs metaphorically read, “A storm is coming.” – Photo: Nick Radhawa, @nicksinghrandhawa

Both Oakland and Berkeley police reportedly denied they employed the agents. Lt. Chris Bolton, @OPDChris, confirmed on Twitter at 11:17 a.m. Dec. 11, “Yes, it was a CHP (California Highway Patrol) arrest conducted by CHP officers.”

The encounter occurred on 24th Street near Harrison in Oakland Lake Merritt and the Whole Foods store, which the police seemed determined to protect after the Whole Foods store in Berkeley had been the target of protesters.

Tynan Krakoff is an Oakland-based organizer and can be reached at tynankrakoff@gmail.com. This is an eyewitness account.

Black-Lives-Matter-Berkeley-Oakland-march-outed-undercover-cop-pulls-gun-121114-by-Noah-Berger-Reuters-web, Outed undercover cop pulls gun on Oakland protesters, Local News & Views
Here’s a photo that shows the cop’s face. (Click to enlarge.) Did you see him committing or encouraging property damage? Several people present said they had seen him breaking windows, but those reports are being questioned. If you witnessed anything relevant, leave a comment, email editor@sfbayview.com or tynankrakoff@gmail.com or call the Bay View at 415-671-0789. We’ll keep you anonymous if you wish. – Photo: Noah Berger, Reuters
















From Noah Berger, the Reuters photographer – includes more of his photos: