Feedback
News

Don’t Whiz on the Alamo’: Texas Man Faces Jail Time

Don't tinkle on Texas.

An El Paso man faces up to 18 months behind bars after pleading guilty to urinating on the Alamo, the crucible of the legendary 1836 battle in San Antonio between the Mexican Army and Texas settlers fighting for independence.

"The message is, 'Don't whiz on the Alamo,'" Bexas County District Attorney Susan Reed said in a statement, according to Reuters. She added that she would oppose any bid for probation.

Daniel Athens, 23, pleaded guilty in a San Antonio court Tuesday to the felony of Criminal Mischief of a Public Monument or Place of Human Burial — a charge that carries a punishment of up to two years in prison.

Athens was arrested in April 2012 after an Alamo Ranger — one of the police officers who stand watch over the state's leading tourist attraction and symbol of civic pride — saw him urinate on the 260-year-old limestone facade of the building.

Per a plea deal, Athens will have to shell out $4,000 to repair any damage to the Alamo, which was built in the 1750s by Spanish colonists.

It's not the first time the Alamo has been treated as a restroom. In 1982, British rocker and reality TV star Ozzy Osbourne urinated on the Cenotaph — a memorial to the Texans killed at the historic battle.

Osbourne was later prohibited from the city by the city council, according to Reuters — a largely symbolic gesture that was later reversed after he donated $10,000 for the Alamo's general upkeep.

Reuters contributed to this report.

— Daniel Arkin