A video has appeared showing sheriff's officers brutally beating what appears to be a group of peaceful Occupy protesters on the University of California campus in Berkeley Wednesday night.

The video was first published on YouTube before being publicised by the Anonymous collective on its AnonOps site. The video shows a line of student protesters being cordoned off by a line of armoured police.

Initially peaceful with the protesters and police, while close, not clashing, part way through the footage an unnamed policeman in the line inexplicably lashes out at one of the protesters. After the initial blow, other officers join the assault, beating a protester who crosses their path.

The video does not reveal the exact location of the incident nor what motivated the attack. The only clue contained in the footage is that the protesters were part of the Occupy Cal (i.e. UC Berkeley) movement.

The footage adds to a growing list of reported incidents of police brutality against occupy protesters.

Prior to it another post on the AnonOps web site showed U.S. police attacking a group Oakland protesters.

The post specifically highlighted the the police's treatment of an unnamed Iraq war veteran participating in the protest. The veteran, Scott Olsen, was put in a critical condition for a time following police's use of tear gas, flash bang grenades and rubber bullets on protesters.

The Occupy Cal movement is a part of a wider series of protests that began in September with Occupy Wall Street.

The protests are all formed from numerous groups each with their own beliefs and qualms with the current global and economic system. The only prominent shared value among all the groups is the common "we are the 99 per cent" catch phrase, which refers to the joint belief that the current global economic and political system only benefits the top 1 per cent.