May 26, 2024

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Pro-Palestine protesters held a news conference Wednesday to decry the use of tear gas against students on Tuesday.

“Shame on all of admin at USF for putting their students in danger,” one of the organizers said.

The group gathered at 56th Street and East Fowler Avenue on Wednesday evening.

When asked if the protesters had any intention to disrupt graduation ceremonies, organizers said “no comment.”

One student, Victoria Hinckley, said she was supposed to graduate on Saturday, but that has now been threatened because she was suspended and trespassed from the university for organizing a protest.

“They are trying to withhold my graduation from me for asserting my right to free speech on campus, for asserting my right to organize, and asserting our right to free speech and to protest on our own campus as college students, who pay tuition to be there — who pay tuition to fund university administrators’ salaries who are trying to suppress our free speech.”

Ten people were arrested on Tuesday after police used tear gas to disperse the protest on campus. Four of those people arrested were students.

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