College protests updates: Police crackdown leads to hundreds of arrests

Hundreds were arrested at USC, Emerson and UT Austin in the last day.

Protests have broken out at colleges and universities across the country in connection with the war in Gaza.

Many pro-Palestinian protesters are calling for their colleges to divest of funds from Israeli military operations, while some Jewish students on the campuses have called the protests antisemitic and said they are scared for their safety.

The student protests -- some of which have turned into around-the-clock encampments -- have erupted throughout the nation following arrests and student removals at Columbia University in New York City. Students at schools including Yale University, New York University, Harvard University, University of Texas at Austin, University of Southern California and more have launched protests.

Columbia's University Senate calls for investigation into administration

The Columbia University Senate is set to establish a task force to investigate the school's administration after their actions, or lack thereof, have divided the university community, the University Senate announced Friday.

The senate alleges the university jeopardized academic freedom by threatening "faculty job security," breached privacy and due process by disregarding "privacy and due process rights of individual students and faculty members."

The Senate also accuses the university of creating a violation of shared governance principles.

"The decision by the University administration to call for police intervention on campus, after the Senate Executive Committee told the administration that the Executive Committee did 'not approve the presence of NYPD on our campus at this time,' has raised serious concerns about the administration’s respect for shared governance and transparency in the University’s decision-making process," the statement read.

Actions by the university and its administration showed "little respect for clearly established protocols," the Senate said.

Cal Poly Humboldt campus closed through end of semester amid protests

California State Polytechnic University's Humboldt campus will be closed through the end of the semester amid ongoing pro-Palestinian protests, the university said Friday.

The campus will be closed through May 10, with remote academic instruction instead, due to the occupation of its Siemens Hall and Nelson Hall East buildings, the university said.

"Since Monday night, protestors have attempted several times to break into multiple locked buildings with the intention of either locking themselves in, vandalizing, or stealing equipment," the university said in a message to the school community. "Vandalism and theft have continued across campus."

The university said protesters -- including students and non-students -- have until 4 p.m. PT Friday to leave the buildings peacefully "with a guarantee of no immediate arrest."

"This does not, however, eliminate University conduct-related sanctions or legal implications," the university added.

Arizona state turns on sprinklers to deter pro-Palestinian protesters

Videos online show sprinklers were turned on where Arizona State University students set up a pro-Palestinian encampment, demanding that the university divest. Students set up their encampment on Friday.

Videos show protesters putting bags and items on top of the sprinklers to stop them from spraying.

More videos show tense interactions between students and ASU police responding to the scene. At least three individuals are seen being arrested, Phoenix ABC affiliate KNXV reported.

Columbia University negotiator says 5 p.m. not a hard deadline

The lead student negotiator with a Columbia University student group organizing the encampment says there is no longer a "deadline" for them to leave, but more of a "timeline."

The group -- Columbia University Apartheid Divest group -- says negotiations with the university remain ongoing and another decision will be made at 5 p.m.

"We have until 5 p.m. to come up with a plan," the Columbia student negotiator said.

-ABC News' Stephanie Ramos

DPS says they used a Taser, pepper balls at Emory, but not tear gas

Georgia's Department of Public Service said they used a Taser and pepper balls as they attempted to control the crowd of protesters at Emory University but did not use tear gas.

DPS released an accounting of their response on campus just a short while ago.

"On April 25, 2024, at 8:30 am, the Emory Police Department and Atlanta Police Department requested the assistance of DPS with an encampment protest at Emory University. Georgia State Troopers and Motor Carrier Officers responded to break up the encampment but were met with protestors who threw bottles and refused to leave," the statement began.

"As Troopers and Officers began to take the protestors into custody, one actively resisted arrest," DPS said, noting they used a Taser on the individual as they "continued to resist."

DPS said during its response to the encampment, "Troopers deployed pepper balls to control the unruly crowd but did not use tear gas."

Charges are being handled by the Emory Police Department, DPS said.

-ABC News' Darren Reynolds