By Miriam Raftery
October 18, 2013– Former Congressional candidate Ray Lutz of El Cajon was arrested in November 2011 for attempting to register voters at the Civic Cente Plaza downtown. This week, Lutz announced he has entered into a settlement with the City in which his arrest record will be expunged and the City will agree not to arrest people in the future for peaceful political activity in public spaces of private property.
"Our goal was to send a clear message and require that the city admit they were wrong. This is about as close to an admission of guilt you can get from the city. We want to make sure this never happens again,” said Lutz.
The area around the Civic Center Office Building is considered private property, even though the area is within the public square which is bordered by City Hall, the Civic Auditorium, the Community Concourse, and the Civic Center Office Building, which was was 93% leased to city offices, including the City Attorney's offices, at the time of the arrest.
The arrest was documented by a YouTube video that went viral shortly after the arrest, at this address: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsHlNR-nVR0
Other videos, including interviews of witnesses at the time of the event and rallies that occurred while Lutz was in jail can be seen at this URL:
Lutz sued the City of San Diego, the Police Department, various officers, and the Civic Center Office Building management, CBRE, and others, who executed a written statement confirming they were performing a citizens arrest for trespassing.
His case against other defendants is still pending.