UC Berkeley Campus Newspaper Confirms That Public Records Office Had Already Given It Police Incident Report on Football Player’s 2013 Attack on Teammate

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Concussion Inc.’s ebook THE TED AGU PAPERS: A Black Life That Mattered — And the Secret History of a Covered-Up Death in University of California Football is available on Kindle-friendly devices at http://amzn.to/2aA2LDl. One hundred percent of royalties are being donated to sickle cell trait research and education.


by Irvin Muchnick


Earlier this month Concussion Inc. published the partially redacted November 1, 2013, campus police incident report of the criminal attack of University of California-Berkeley football player J.D. Hinnant on teammate Fabiano Hale. The incident arguably was a form of “code red” internal discipline imposed by Damon Harrington, then the strength and conditioning assistant under head coach Sonny Dykes. See https://concussioninc.net/?p=11826 and https://concussioninc.net/?p=11829.

The document, as supplied to us by the university’s California Public Records Act compliance office, has marks indicating that it had previously been released to the Daily Cal, the student newspaper. And the Daily Cal has confirmed as much.

By email, Andrea Platten, the newspaper’s managing editor, said, “The UC Berkeley PRA office did disclose the UCPD report to the Daily Cal after we put in a PRA request in May 2016. We have not run a story on it,”

My own initial PRA request for internal documents on the Hinnant-Hale incident — as well as on the death three months later of Ted Agu during Harrington’s extreme offseason conditioning drill, for which the UC regents would make a $4.75 million civil lawsuit settlement — dates back to April 2016. It is not clear why the university withheld from Concussion Inc. for ten months a document it had already released to another public requester nine months earlier.

Liane Ko, the Berkeley campus PRA coordinator, has not responded to a request for clarification or comment.

In anticipation of possible litigation in state court for what we believe are multiple violations of the records act, we also asked Ko for an inventory of which requests of ours are considered “open” and which “closed.” On February 21, Ko said the office was reviewing the records and would respond shortly.

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Concussion Inc. - Author Irvin Muchnick