As Berkeley's People's Park continues to be occupied by homeless individuals and others, while the UC Regents pause a planned construction project at the site, there was a weekend of multiple violent incidents there.

As KTVU reports, an assault was reported Sunday morning in which the victim was a transgender person, and it is being treated as a hate crime. The victim was reportedly attacked with a shovel and kicked by three assailants, two of whom remain at large. One suspect, identified as a 20-year-old woman from Antioch, was arrested.

A university spokesperson said the victim was transported to a hospital for treatment.

As the Daily Californian reports, the suspects also allegedly tried to set the victim's tent on fire while the victim was still inside. The UCPD is investigating the incident.

This assault followed on another that occurred earlier involving a baseball bat. The victim in that incident had no visible injuries, and KTVU reports they "walked away while officers were completing the report." The suspect remains at large.

KTVU also mentions an arson incident on Sunday, but that may have involved the same victim as the hate-crime assault.

These incidents come at a time of high tension around the park, which has been the site of homeless encampments and drug use for many years, in addition to being a symbol of late-60s activism, anti-gentrification protest, and the Free Speech Movement.

In recent years, the university has moved to finally develop the site as student housing, and the city council and general public sentiment seemed to coalesce around accepting this project. As long ago as 2006, then Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates — himself one of the original builders of the park in 1969 — was telling the LA Times, "Over time, people have come to realize that the park has not become what they hoped it would be... it is not a place that a lot of people are comfortable going to."

When the time came for fencing and construction equipment earlier this month, however, a contingent of activists and homeless advocates again appeared to defend the park and oppose the development.

The Daily Californian reported that only three individuals continued to reside in the park as of earlier this month, but that number may have grown. As we reported last week, a judge has ordered another halt to the construction until at least October.

More incidents of violence, however, like this weekend's are likely to sway public sentiment further toward supporting the development. The university has pledged to provide low-income housing in the 16-story building for the formerly homeless.

Previously: Activists Win This Round, Development Halted at Berkeley’s People's Park Until October

Image: @maksim_ioffe via Twitter