Russell B. Roberts '64 will be arraigned this morning in the Third District Court of Eastern Middlesex County on a charge of assault and battery on a policeman.
Roberts, who called the charge "the most outrageous and least imaginative lie I've ever heard," was arrested Sunday morning in front of the Waldorf Cafeteria in Cambridge.
The 20-year-old junior was taken to police headquarters after he protested the manner in which an officer was arresting another student on a charge of drunkenness. The arresting officer first told Roberts he would be charged with drunkenness and later interfering with an arrest.
At the Central Square station, Roberts claims, the police first began to fill out forms booking him for drunkenness. When Roberts asked to be examined by a physician, he said, the police refused; the drunkenness charge was then dropped and the forms torn up. Subsequently the desk sergeant denied to Roberts that a drunkenness charge was ever initiated.
May File Suit
Roberts is reportedly considering filing suit on the grounds of false arrest, assault and battery, and violation of the civil rights act. There is also some possibility that he may bring defamation of character suits against two city policemen, one against the arresting officer who allegedly charged that Roberts was drunk, the other against an officer who called Roberts, a Southerner, a "niggerkilling rebel." Roberts is a member of the American Civil Liberties Union and one of the founding members of the Harvard Civil Rights Co-ordinating Committee.
Witnesses Michael L. Silves '65 and Hendrik Hertzberg '65 last night corroborated Roberts' claim that both he and the student arrested for drunkenness were "manhandled" by the arresting officer. Silves also told the CRIMSON that Roberts was absolutely sober.
Cambridge police declined last night to reveal the name of the arresting officer.