Texas man charged for impeding law enforcement during protest
HOUSTON – A 32-year-old resident of Austin has been taken into custody on charges of civil disorder, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
Travis Glendon Martin III is set to make his appearance at 2:00 p.m. today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Dena H. Palermo. He is charged in a criminal complaint filed June 5.
According to the charges, authorities had been engaged in the lawful performance of their duties May 29 during a protest in Houston related to the death of George Floyd. The protest allegedly involved multiple acts of violence at the hands of many which resulted in damage to property and injury to peaceful protesters and others.
Some law enforcement personnel were assigned to control pedestrian traffic and prevent their entrance to Interstate-45, according to the charges. During this time, Martin allegedly lowered his shoulder and rammed one of the officers in an attempt to break through the police line and enter the interstate.
Officers attempted to gain control of Martin who had been exhibiting passive resistance by placing his arms underneath his body as he lay on the ground, according to the complaint. Martin’s actions allegedly impeded law enforcement as another individual was able to remove a traffic cone and throw it at the officers while they attempted to take Martin into custody.
The complaint further alleges that Martin’s actions emboldened others to commit similar acts. During his arrest, yet another person then threw traffic cones at the officers which further obstructed, delayed and adversely affected commerce up the ramp and onto the interstate, according to the charges.
Civil disorder involves the commission of any act or attempt to obstruct, impede or interfere with a fireman or law enforcement officer lawfully engaged in the performance of official duties which adversely affects commerce.
If convicted, Martin faces up to five years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 fine.
The FBI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Schammel is prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.