Gun Rights Activists Plan To Protest Recent Arrests In West Odessa

By Mitch Borden

Second Amendment advocates are preparing to descend on West Odessa this Saturday to protest the arrests of six armed individuals in early-May at Big Daddy Zane’s, a West Odessa bar.

Big Daddy Zane’s, a bar in West Odessa, has been at the center of this controversy ever since its owner decided to defy Governor Greg Abbot and open up on May 4th, which was illegal at the time. (Mitch Borden / Marfa Public Radio)

On May 4, armed demonstrators gathered to support the bar’s then illegal reopening which violated Gov. Abbott’s emergency coronavirus orders.

The Ector County Sheriff’s Department took six armed protestors into custody that day, with Sheriff Mike Griffis defending the arrests, saying it is illegal to carry weapons on bar premises.

However, critics say that the Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission’s code only applies to the licensing and management of a bar, and that the Texas Penal Code does not consider carrying a weapon outside of a bar to be a felony offense. 

Now, groups like Open Carry Texas and Freedom Initiative for Texas are headed to Big Daddy Zane’s this weekend to protest the arrests they see as illegal.

Jenny Cudd, former candidate for Midland Mayor, posted a video on Facebook urging anyone who was a “red-blooded American” to come out to stand for their rights.

“Right now, I believe that many of our rights and freedoms are under attack and a lot is going on in the world to distract us from that,” Cudd said.

So far, Sheriff Griffis, who is a proponent of the Second Amendment, has not released a statement about the upcoming protest.

The protest at Big Daddy Zane’s will take place on Saturday, June 6 from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.

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About Mitch Borden

Mitch Borden is Marfa Public Radio's Permian Basin Reporter. If you have any questions about West Texas' energy industry or the Permian Basin email him at mitch@marfapublicradio.org.
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