Student Government (SG) presidential candidate Josh Llano was arrested Friday for driving under the influence and possession of fake identification.
Janell Hall, a spokesperson for the Miami-Dade County Corrections and Rehabilitation Center, confirmed the arrest and the charges, which included resisting City of Miami officers without violence. Llano’s arrest will not immediately affect his ability to be considered for SG candidacy.
Llano, who was released on bail Saturday, declined to provide details about the situation, stating that it does not reflect on his character.
“What happened on Friday doesn’t affect the type of person I am at all. I am not in any way shape or form the type of person the case makes me out to be,” Llano said.
While Llano’s case is still pending, his ticket, “U Know What It Is,” will still remain on the ballot during SG elections Monday through Wednesday.
In order for Llano to be eliminated from the election, the Dean of Students Office must charge him with a violation of the Students’ Rights and Responsibility code, which means he would no longer be in good standing with the university. The SG Elections Commission would then be able to charge Llano with a violation of the good standing status required for candidacy.
“It’s very hard to be removed from the ballot,” said Aaron Esman, SG speaker of the Senate. “There are things you can do to not get on the ballot initially, but the ballot is different.”
As of now, Llano has not received any charges from the Dean of Students or the Elections Commission. With elections currently underway, there is no time for any charge to affect the ballot. Yet, Llano may be charged by the Dean of Students before election results are finalized by the SG Senate next week.
“The situation has been brought to my attention,” said SG press secretary Ryan Aquilina. “At this time, SG is not able to do anything, the university has to make that call.”
This is not the first time Llano has been arrested. In February 2010, Llano was charged with petty theft and in March 2010 Llano was charged in Monroe County for possession of a fake ID.
Llano’s criminal record is not the only factor that has brought his integrity as a candidate into question. At Thurday’s presidential debate, Llano was about half an hour late. On Sunday, The Miami Hurricane invited “U Know What It Is” and the other tickets to present their platforms for candidate endorsement, and no members of Llano’s ticket showed up.
An executive board member of Pi Kappa Alpha said that Llano was never elected, or even ran, as the fraternity’s president, an experience Llano claimed as a qualification for his SG presidency. Llano is not currently an active member of Pi Kappa Alpha.
Despite the evidence against him, Llano hopes UM students can see past his mistakes and give him consideration for the presidency.
“It’s the worst possible timing,” Llano said. “It’s an embarrassment. No one should have been in the position I was in. It’s an obstacle I have to overcome.”
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