SINTON - A battle over a controversial sign in Sinton has gone to court. As we've reported, many people in Sinton have expressed concern over a sign that was posted above the Rialto Theatre.
The owner of the theatre, Jorge Sosa, put a sign on the marquee about a month ago that read "Sex Education".
Sosa told us the sign was an attack against the city. He said he wanted to embarrass the city because of some personal issues he has with some of the residents.
But when Sosa changed the wording on the sign to a much more aggressive message yesterday, police were at the the theatre within hours. They say a citizen filed a formal complaint. Sosa says they convinced him to take it down.
The court says that Sosa "knowingly and intentionally put up an offensive public display".
In a court hearing today, Sosa pled not guilty. Now, the issue goes to trial.
We can't tell you what Sosa changed the sign to because we can't verify the truthfulness of the accusations he's making.
Many in Sinton are relieved to see the sign finally come down.
"It's a very big relief. Like I said, I've lived here for 52 years. I never thought I would see something so insulting in this town!" long time resident Betty Strain says.
Concerned citizen Sue Mayfield is also glad to see the sign go.
"This is a small town and it's like a family. You don't need stuff like that. You know, its bad," she says.
City Manager James Minor says it was always a tense situation, but yesterday changed everything.
"The wording (on the sign) got changed. That just kind of ramped it up a bit. It increased the phone calls and it just got a little more serious," he says.
Sosa says he may have taken it too far.
"You know, I would hate for it to get into any violence and that's what the police chief suggested, that it might go that way," he says.
He told us its over.
"No more signs," Sosa says.
Sosa is set for a pre-trial hearing next Wednesday at 9 a.m.