American Flag Vandal Arrested

American Flag Vandal Arrested

Santa Barbara – With apparent disregard for the fact that he was potentially violating Chapter 1 of Title 4 of the United States Code regarding the proper care of the flag of the United States of America (for which there are, according to various Supreme Court decisions, no criminal penalties pursuant to Constitutional provisions for the right to free speech), and that he was doing so in full view of passersby in one of downtown Santa Barbara’s most public places, Kenneth Ruz, 49, has been arrested and charged with vandalism and resisting arrest for cutting down the American Flag from a city flagpole.

When, according to Santa Barbara Police Department Public Information Officer Sgt. Riley Harwood, witnesses reported Ruz cutting down the flag at De La Guerra Plaza just before 10:00 p.m. on February 19th, SBPD patrol officers and members of the SBPD “night enforcement team” were quickly on the scene.  Ruz was soon located just a block away from the site of the alleged incident.

As Ruz was being questioned and given the routine “pat-down” by officers to verify that he was not carrying any weapons, Harwood reported that Ruz “decided to start to resist and stepped away as if he was about to run away.”  At that point, Ruz was subdued by four officers and quickly handcuffed.  He was held at the scene for identification by those who witnessed him cutting the ropes to the De la Guerra Plaza flagpole, and his identity was then verified as the perpetrator.

Ruz gave no explanation for his actions, and because his alleged crime was not witnessed by law enforcement, a citizen’s arrest was made.  He was later released on his own recognizance, and will presumably make a future court appearance where he may attempt to run an explanation for his actions up the judicial flagpole.

Photo: Courtesy of Facebook

Read more:

Noozhawk: Man accused of cutting down U.S. flag near city hall

 

American Flag Vandal Arrested was last modified: February 21st, 2014 by admin
Categories: Santa Barbara