SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — The United Daughters of the Confederacy’s Shreveport chapter has been given formal notice that they have 90 days to remove their monument from outside the Caddo Parish Courthouse.
UPDATE: The attorney for the UDC released a statement Friday afternoon in response to the demand letter from Caddo Parish. Read that statement here.
In a certified letter dated August 28, Parish Attorney Donna Frazier advises the group that the letter “serves as the demand under Art. 493 of the Civil Code for Shreveport Chapter #237 of the Daughters of the Confederacy to remove its property which is the Confederate Monument located at Courthouse Square” on Texas Street in downtown Shreveport.
As you are aware, Caddo Parish has been in litigation with the Daughters concerning removal of the monument since October 2017, when the Parish passed Resolution 69 of 2017 authorizing the monument’s removal. The Federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal has ruled that the Parish owns the ground beneath the monument and has the right to request its removal.
“By virtue of Resolution 69, the Parish has withdrawn consent for the Confederate Monument, as your organization’s property, to remain on the Courthouse Square which is the Parish’s property.”Aug. 28, 2019 letter from Caddo Parish to Shreveport Chapter #237 of the Daughters of the Confederacy
The letter advises that “the Parish is willing to grant the Daughters reasonable access to Courthouse Square to remove the monument and return the space it occupies to a reasonable condition.”
The demand to remove the monument comes nearly two years after the Caddo Parish Commission voted to remove the monument. The Shreveport chapter of the Daughters of the Confederacy immediately filed suit to block the removal on the grounds that it has a “private property interest” in the land where the statue stands in front of the Caddo Parish Courthouse. It also claims parish officials violated its rights to free speech and equal protection.
A federal judge in Monroe threw out the suit last year, a decision that has since been upheld by a federal appeals court.
The deadline for removal of the monument is Tuesday, November 26, 2019.
The chapter’s attorney has not responded to requests for comment.