Odessa, TX – Emotions ran high as Ector County played host to several out-of-town visitors. Demonstrators gathered at Big Daddy Zane’s bar on Saturday afternoon… for a second time.
The parking lot was filled with various flags, and an abundance of full body armor, tactical gear, and rifles. The Second Amendment advocates were comprised of such organizations as ‘Open Carry Texas’ and ‘This Is Texas Freedom Force’. The armed participants were in Odessa to defend First and Second Amendment rights, which they believe were violated last month.
Gabrielle Ellison, owner of Big Daddy Zane’s, was charged with violations of emergency management plan back on May 4. Six men were also charged with felonies for unlawfully carrying weapons on a Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission licensed premise. Their presence in the first meeting was to show solidarity with Ellison as she reopened the establishment… even though it went against Gov. Greg Abbott’s non-essential business orders. Those arrests and the investigation are still ongoing.
In this afternoon’s second chapter, the protesters brought a message directed more at Sheriff Griffis. The charges need to be dropped against Ellison and the men that were arrested because “those men were within their rights to carry.” Open Carry Texas also believes the bail bonds should be refunded.
The group spent about three hours at Big Daddy Zane’s before making a departing trip out to the Ector County Detention Center. They reassembled in the facility parking lot for a 30-minute visit without confrontation or incident, and then they were off to (presumed) fight another battle in some other Texas location.
Brandon Burkhart, President ‘This Is Texas Freedom Force’