UC Berkeley Police Arrest Suspect in Campus Attack on Conservative Activist

By Tiffany Meier
Tiffany Meier
Tiffany Meier
Tiffany Meier is a New York-based reporter and host of NTD's "China in Focus" and "Deep Dive."
March 3, 2019 Updated: March 3, 2019

Campus police arrested a man suspected of attacking conservative activist Hayden Williams on the University of California Berkeley campus last month, according to new reports.

On Friday, March 1, campus police booked Zachary Greenberg, 28, into jail after he was believed to be the man who was caught on camera punching the conservative activist at the university campus on Feb. 19.

Greenberg allegedly hit Williams multiple times, including directly in the face, according to the video.

“UCPD will formally present the case to the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office for consideration of the filing of criminal charges,” the UC Berkeley Public Affairs team announced in a campus statement.

“Once the matter is presented and reviewed by the District Attorney’s Office, additional information will be made available regarding a charging decision,” the statement concluded.

Greenberg is being held on a $30,000 bail, according to local media.

Following Greenberg’s arrest, Charlie Kirk, founder and president of TPUSA, issued a statement, calling the evidence in the case “incontrovertible.”

“Today, we have finally learned the identity of the attacker and that the violent man has been arrested,” his statement read. “While every America should be afforded their due process, we believe that the video evidence in this case is incontrovertible.”

“We hope 28-year-old Zachary Greenberg is prosecuted to the full extent of the law for assault with a deadly weapon, which should be considered an act of hate,” he continued. “Hopefully, this dark chapter will act as a wake up call to those concerned about actual politically motivated hate crimes in America. Berkeley and all college campuses across American should be safe havens for free thought and opinions—especially for a targeted conservative minority.”

The Violent Incident

The activist, Hayden Williams, was manning a table recruiting for Turning Point USA (TPUSA), a conservative student organization operating on 1,400 campuses.

The display had signs reading, “Hate crime hoaxes hurt real victims” and “This is MAGA Country”—a reference to the case of Jussie Smollett, a TV actor charged with staging a racially motivated attack on himself. Smollett had tried to frame supporters of President Donald Trump by claiming the attackers referenced Trump’s campaign slogan “Make America Great Again.”

Williams was then approached by critics and began to record the encounter.

“I’m just going to video it for my own safety, because you seem really erratic,” he told one person who accused him of “encouraging violence.” His actions only angered the pair more and he was attacked moments later, reported the Washington Enquirer.

The video of the incident was posted on Twitter by Charlie Kirk, president of TPUSA, and had over 2 million views by March 1.

“Imagine if the attacker was wearing MAGA hat, would be national news!” Kirk wrote in the tweet. “This is the violent left!”

In response to the incident, the university expressed “unwavering” commitment to “freedom of expression and perspective.”

“Let there be no mistake, we strongly condemn violence and harassment of any sort, for any reason,” Chancellor Carol Christ said in a message to the campus community. “That sort of behavior is intolerable and has no place here.”

Williams is a field representative for the conservative Leadership Institute, a training organization for conservative activists.

“The fact that the victim was not a campus affiliate has no bearing on this case,” campus spokesperson Dan Mogulof said. “He had every right to be on campus, and every right to express his point of view.”

“There’s a certain culture there that is especially hostile on Berkeley’s campus and across the country to conservative students,”Williams said in an interview with Fox Business Network. “They’re willing to use violence if they think you’re being too controversial.”

Tiffany Meier
Tiffany Meier
Tiffany Meier is a New York-based reporter and host of NTD's "China in Focus" and "Deep Dive."