Former Colorado lawmaker and El Paso County Commissioner Douglas Bruce was cited for trespassing Saturday in a Costco parking lot in Colorado Springs.
Bruce and another man were collecting signatures for a proposed city ballot measure. He is the author of the Taxpayer Bills of Rights, known as TABOR, an amendment that restricts state spending.
Police were called to the Costco at 5885 Barnes Road at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, after receiving a call from someone who complained.
"I got complaints from members," Costco general manager John Wynns told the Gazette. "He (Bruce) was making a scene."
Wynns said Costco didn't call police but a customer may have.
Officers talked with Bruce and Douglas Stinehagen and were told by the officers to leave. According to police, both men refused to comply with the order and were cited for trespass on private property.
Bruce said he will fight the ticket and will request a jury trial.
"We were arrested because the city doesn't want our petition to get on the ballot because it would impact city revenue and they have apparently created a new rule where the first Amendment doesn't apply if you are petitioning to do something the government doesn't want," he said.
Bruce said the city uses police as their "political muscle."
A person found guilty of trespassing faces a fine up to $500 and/or up to 90 days in jail.
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