Free Speech Trial of Pro-Life Advocates Begins in Jackson, Mississippi


Life Legal Defense Foundation Champions Rights Abused by High School Officials

This week the freedom of speech drama that began last March outside of Murrah High School in Jackson, Mississippi, will finally make it to trial. Kristina Garza and Brianna Baxter were wrongly arrested outside the public school while peacefully distributing literature promoting the sanctity of life to students leaving school as they passed by on the public sidewalk. The young women are scheduled to get their day in court with a trial set to begin this Friday, December 7, at 9:30 a.m. Life Legal Defense Foundation staff counsel, Allison Aranda, is coordinating with local attorneys, James Bell and Caleb Koonce, who are representing Garza and Baxter.

Jackson Public School (JPS) officials originally ordered Garza and Baxter to leave the public sidewalk outside the school, claiming inaccurately that it was private property.  Later, JPS officials told the police a different story, claiming that Garza and Baxter engaged in disorderly conduct. Witness testimony along with video and photographic evidence will be presented to document the intimidation and threats used against the women by school officials as they engaged in legally protected peaceful free speech activities. The school officers did admit that they attempted to prevent Garza and Baxter from handing out informational leaflets supporting alternatives to abortion.

“This whole fiasco has been a waste of tax payer resources,” said Dana Cody, Executive Director for Life Legal Defense Foundation. “At no time did Kristina or Brianna violate the law. The real culprits here are the Jackson Public School officials who intimidated and threatened them, thereby abusing their constitutional rights. Kristina and Brianna look forward to their day in court and hope to be vindicated of these baseless charges.”

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