Tim Tizon, a student at Arizona State University, was handing out pamphlets of the U.S. Constitution to students on a campus plaza when university officials ordered him to stop. When Tizon refused to move to an isolated location away from the main campus plaza, university police arrested him. Tizon was then charged with and convicted of criminal trespassing in the third degree, and was sentenced to pay a fine and complete community service—all for handing out copies of one of the nation’s founding documents to other students in a public forum.
At the time of his removal, Tizon was representing his student organization, Young Americans for Liberty (YAL). Tizon was told that his table, set up out of the way of foot traffic and displaying the YAL logo, violated university policy. ASU officials said that the location could only be used by recognized student organizations after completing paperwork and securing several levels of sign-offs from university bureaucrats. In fact, however, the North Plaza of ASU’s Tempe campus, where Tizon was located, is designated as a public forum–so Tizon had every right to hand out copies of the Constitution.
Young Americans for Liberty is a well-regarded student group on college campuses across the country, focused on helping young people advance a pro-liberty philosophy throughout college and beyond.
The Liberty Justice Center has filed an appeal to reverse Tizon’s conviction. University bureaucrats must respect students’ right to speak in public areas.