Last Friday, March 20th, two Berkeley Ambassadors were involved in an assault that was never accurately reported by them. Their false report, which described the event as “an act of self-defense” by the ambassador, was the sole basis for the arrest of the two homeless men that night.
“I was called within the hour of it happening,” said Lance Gorée, Operations Manager for the downtown Berkeley Association, and the Manager of the Ambassador Program. “I always get called right away. They didn’t fully represent what happened.”
Video evidence of the incident shows a different story.
Excerpt from SFGate - “As the video starts, the ambassadors, identified in court documents as Jeffrey Bailey and Carmen Francois, can be seen trying to get the men to move their belongings near a large trash bin. Bailey and one of the men exchange words before Bailey appears to punch the man in the head. The man falls to the ground where Bailey appears to continue punching him while Francois appears to prevent the other man from intervening.”
Now that video of the incident has surfaced, the district attorney’s office has been asked to take another look at the case. The ambassador involved in the assault was fired on Thursday, while the second ambassador, who did not intervene in any way to stop the the assault, has been suspended, pending an internal investigation.
NOTE: The Berkeley Ambassadors are private employees of Block By Block, a company that specializes in providing staff to business improvement districts like the downtown Berkeley Association.
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