When This Uvalde Parent Complained About a New Police Hire, He Was Banned From School Property
In May of last year, a former Uvalde high school student entered Robb Elementary School and opened fire, killing 19 students and two teachers and injuring over a dozen more. Following the shooting, local police faced widespread, national outrage for their failure to intervene for nearly an hour. Eventually, the school district suspended its entire police force and fired its chief of police.
Adam Martinez’s youngest son was at Robb Elementary on the day of the shooting—though thankfully he was physically unharmed—and, like many other parents, he became a vocal critic of the police department. However, in retaliation for his criticism, the school district banned him from school property—and school board meetings—for two years.
On Monday, the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) sent a demand letter requesting that the school lift its two-year ban on Martinez or face a lawsuit.
“The First Amendment exists so that people can use their voices to advocate for social and political change,” FIRE attorney Jeff Zeman said in a Monday press release. “Criticizing the government is protected speech, and Uvalde can’t police it.”
On February 13, 2023, Martinez attended a Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District (UCISD) School Board meeting after learning that the school district had hired an officer that the Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office had judged “ineligible for rehire,” according to the demand letter. During the meeting, Martinez approached Joshua Gutierrez, the UCISD police chief, to express concerns about this new officer.
“As multiple recordings of the mee
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