Protesters opposing Texas 'sanctuary city' bill stage sit-in

Tensions are rising as Texas gets ready to pass a new law that's tough on so called "sanctuary cities" and on May 1 that tension erupted into some protests aimed at Governor Abbott.

There were some cheers as DPS released about two dozen protesters who had been arrested and held in jail. 

Those arrested were among a crowd of people who had wanted to sit in the lobby of the State Insurance Building to get the attention of Gov. Abbott.

When the building was set to close, Texas troopers tried to get the protesters to leave after 5 p.m. but some refused, including Austin City Councilman Greg Casar, and so they were arrested.

The protesters are all facing criminal trespass charges. A court date for them will likely be scheduled sometime next month.

It's estimated more than 100 people, many wearing T-shirts denouncing the proposal against "sanctuary cities," marched Monday to the state Capitol, then to the Texas Department of Insurance building.   

They sat in the lobby, vowing to remain until Republican Gov. Greg Abbott rejects the bill, which hasn't yet cleared the state Legislature.   

They spent more than six hours demonstrating and chanting in English and Spanish. Some locked arms to block building entrances.   

Abbott wasn't present.

 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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