Woman pepper-sprayed at Berkeley riot files suit for $23 mil

  • Berkeley student Kiara Robles has sued her university for failing to protect her free-speech rights after she was pepper-sprayed at February's on-campus riots.
  • The lawsuit targets 18 individuals or entities, including the school's police department, chancellor, and president.

A woman who was pepper-sprayed during February’s infamous Berkeley riots has now sued her school and several other entities for obstructing her First-Amendment rights.

video of the incident shows student Kiara Robles participating in an interview with a local news outlet, discussing her support for Milo Yiannopoulos, when she was suddenly approached by a protester and pepper-sprayed.

“It's time that the vicious and destructive actions of the left...are held to account."   

[RELATED: Berkeley students want to fight fascism by banning speech]

Now, Robles is targeting her school and 18 other individuals or organizations in a lawsuit filed Monday, seeking damages of up to $23 million.

“She was assaulted. The California university system, and in part, Berkeley, is out of control, and they’re facilitating, if not inciting, violence, and the campus police sit around twiddling their thumbs,” Larry Klayman, an attorney with Freedom Watch who is representing Robles, told SFGATE.

“We want justice for Kiara,” he added, noting that the lawsuit targets the school’s police department, Chancellor Nicholas Dirks, President Janet Napolitano and Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguin, but also House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and business magnate George Soros, according to a press release on the case.

[RELATED: Berkeley students condone violent reactions to ‘hate speech’]

The press release explains that the complaint alleges “a number of causes of action, including civil rights violations, First and Fourth Amendment violations, equal protection violation, negligence, gross negligence, premises liability, negligent infliction of emotional distress, intentional infliction of emotional distress, assault, battery, and violations of the Bane Act.”

Klayman, who will be joined by attorney Michael Kolodzi as local counsel in the case, stated that the behavior exhibited at February’s riots “cannot be permitted in civilized society, and that is why [Robles] courageously brought suit.”

“It's time that the vicious and destructive actions of the left and its enablers such as UC Berkeley are held to account,” he added, though the university has since told WISHTV 8 that it will conduct a “vigorous and successful defense of its actions, and looks forward to contesting this collection of false claims.”

[RELATED: Berkeley riots lay bare liberal hypocrisy on free speech]

Robles, though, denounced her university in the press release as an “indoctrination camp, saying that it has shown that it “cannot remain politically neutral.”

"If public universities cannot remain politically neutral while receiving public funding, we have to separate universities and the state," she remarked. "College campuses are an indoctrination camp for political correctness. We must communicate with civility without defaulting to racism, sexism, bigotry, or whoever pays the most for political violence wins."

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Nikita Vladimirov
Nikita Vladimirov | Correspondents Editor

Nikita Vladimirov is a Correspondents Editor for Campus Reform. Prior to joining Campus Reform, he wrote for The Hill, where he extensively covered the latest political developments in U.S. and around the world. A 2016 national finalist for the Society of Professional Journalists' "Mark of Excellence Award," Nikita now resides in Washington D.C. and contributes to the Washington Examiner. His work has appeared on the front pages of The Drudge Report and The Hill, and has been featured by leading media organizations including Fox News, MSN, Real Clear Defense and many others.

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