Third student arrested for Border Patrol incident after watching traffic accident
Photo of U.S. Border Patrol vehicle, courtesy mark6mauno (Flikr).
A third student charged with a misdemeanor for her part in a March 19 incident with U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents was arrested while viewing the aftermath of a traffic accident, according to a University of Arizona spokesperson.
The student, whose name the Daily Wildcat is withholding for safety reasons, was charged with “Interference with the Peaceful Conduct of an Educational Institution” on Thursday and was served under unusual circumstances.
“Actually, it was a fortunate chance, I guess,” Chris Sigurdson, spokesperson for UA said. “A UAPD police officer, I’m told, was working a collision, and [the student] was ... watching. He recognized her from video as the third person of interest and so he asked her to come down to the station, which she did.”
The arrest came the same day as a contentious speaking engagement featuring Art del Cueto, vice president of the National Border Patrol Council, the nation’s largest Border Patrol Union, in front of conservative campus organizations, with a group of about 50 protestors sporting “U.S. Murder Patrol” shirts demonstrating in the hallways.
On Wednesday, UA President Robert Robbins issued a third letter in the aftermath of the March 19 incident. This letter was in direct response to a death threat received by the UA Department of Mexican American Studies on Tuesday, which prompted an evacuation of the building’s second floor.
“We take every one of those threatening messages seriously,” Robbins said. “And I want all of you to do the same. The UA Police Department is consulting with law enforcement partners, including the Joint Terrorism Task Force, to evaluate threats and the sources of those threats.”
Robbins acknowledged the March 19 incident and peripheral events like the death threat “has challenged our commitment to safety as well as our interpretation of First Amendment rights.”
In addition, Robbins announced he would hold a series of upcoming “Campus Conversations,” events meant to encourage civility and work toward the UA becoming a model of free speech.
“We need to work proactively every day to maintain a safe, inclusive campus that values free expression. I am confident that we can ensure we have a campus that values each other and the unique qualities that make the U of A such a wonderful place to learn and work,” Robbins wrote.
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