Petitioning leads to arrest

An activist was struck in the face in the free speech section of Gorton Quad on Aug. 23 after interfering with a petition circulator who was collecting signatures.

According to Campus Police, Sgt. Jordan Mirakian, there was a dispute  at approximately 10:45 a.m. that led to an arrest for battery.

City College dispatch received a call about a disturbance between two individuals in front of the Learning Research Center. Officers detained the individual who was positively identified as the suspect accused of striking the other individual.

A subsequent investigation revealed that the suspect was gathering signatures from students on campus and the victim was attempting to interfere with the signature gathering.

At some point the suspect struck the victim in the face with an open palm and fled the area.

The suspect was arrested for battery on school grounds, issued a citation and released.

Andrew Chacon, a petition circulator affiliated with the organization  Petitioning for Progression, describes his part in petition circulating as gathering support for ballots.  According to Chacon the pay for each signature can range from 70 cents to $5.

The victim is affiliated with The American Federation of Teachers Guild.

According to AFT’s website members have been working to combat the deceptive signature gatherers in the city of San Diego and the state of California.
AFT claims to have seen the use of fake petitions and lies about ballot measures.

“We always encourage the public to avoid confrontation or inference with any individual off or on campus,” Marakian said.