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Charges dismissed against 46 arrested during pro-Palestinian protest at UT Austin

Law enforcement officers arrest students taking part in the demonstration.
Michael Minasi
KUT News
Law enforcement officers arrest students taking part in the demonstration.

Charges have been dismissed against 46 people arrested at a protest Wednesday on UT Austin's campus, Travis County Attorney Delia Garza said.

"Legal concerns were raised by defense counsel, we reviewed each case individually and agreed there were deficiencies in the probable cause affidavits," she told KUT in a text. "The Court affirmed and ordered the release of the individuals."

Nearly 60 people were arrested for allegedly trespassing during the pro-Palestinian demonstration. Garza said her office would continue to review cases to determine whether prosecution "is factually and legally appropriate."

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered on UT campus Wednesday as part of a walkout and protest in support of Palestinians and demanding a ceasefire in Gaza. The protest, organized by the Palestine Solidarity Committee, was met by a multiagency show of force. State police responded by request from UT President Jay Hartzell and Gov. Greg Abbott, who characterized the protest as violent and anti-Semitic.

Officers from the Austin Police Department, UT Police and the Department of Public Safety attempted to clear the university's south lawn. Dozens of protesters were arrested for criminal trespassing, a misdemeanor akin to loitering, or disorderly conduct, which is also a misdemeanor.

A protest organized by faculty condemning the police response to Wednesday's demonstration is planned for Thursday at the UT Tower.

The demonstrations are part of a wave of protests over Israel's war in Gaza.

Copyright 2024 KUT News. To see more, visit KUT News.

Andrew Weber