Charges Dropped Against Three Students Who Protested Border Patrol
The Pima County Attorney’s Office has dropped misdemeanor charges against three University of Arizona students, who protested at a Customs and Border Protection event, captured in a video that went viral on social media.
On Friday, the attorney’s office moved motions in a Pima County Justice Court to drop the charges against the students after weeks of lobbying and calls to the office were made by their supporters, according to The AZ Central.
“We know that this was only made possible by the massive community support we have received, both on campus and off,” the students said in a release.
Last month, two Border Patrol agents who were giving a presentation in a classroom were heckled by the students outside of the classroom, shouting “Murder Patrol,” “murderers” and “an extension of the KKK”.
DACA recipients also backed the charged students and penned an open letter, claiming that the presence of Customs and Border Protection agents on campus alone causes them “discomfort and fear.”
“As DACA recipients at the university, the presence of CBP on campus has a traumatic impact on our overall well being and impedes us from fully engaging with our academics,” the letter reads.
Coincidentally, the students were charged days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order to enforce free speech on college campuses across the country, allowing 12 federal agencies to withhold federal research or education grants from colleges that practice censorship.
While the university said it respects the court’s decision, its Office of the Dean of Students will continue its own internal investigation.
“The University is aware of the Pima County Attorney’s determination in the March 19th incident involving our students,” the statement reads. “We respect the decision and will continue to follow our processes and the law. The University is moving forward with the Dean of Students’ process review of the incident per our policies.”