Was the act of pepper spraying students for non-compliance an assault? Gunsmithing&Politics thinks it was. Robert thinks it was not. Pondering it myself and watching the video again, I want to turn the question around.
If, by chance, one of the students had popped up and grabbed the can of pepper spray, turned it around, and sprayed the policeman with it, would that have been assault? What response would you expect from the other police officers on the scene? What would the student have been charged with?
If one is assault, then why not the other? If acting to prevent further assault is justified to prevent injury to the policeman, then why didn’t the other officers act to prevent injury to the students?
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?