Cal Poly professor charged with battering an officer, drunk driving

March 6, 2024

Shanae Aurora Martinez


Officers arrested a Cal Poly San Luis Obispo professor twice in less than a month, once for allegedly battering an officer and several weeks later for drunk driving.

During a pro-Palestinian protest at Cal Poly on Jan. 23, in which eight other people were arrested, officers nabbed Shanae Aurora Martínez, 38, on a misdemeanor charge of battery of a peace officer. She is scheduled for arraignment on March 20.

Three weeks later during the early morning hours of Feb. 14, a CHP officer arrested Martínez for driving under the influence. The officer booked her into the San Luis Obispo County jail at 3:23 a.m. Prosecutors filed DUI charges against the professor on March 4.

Martínez is an assistant professor of English specializing in Indigenous literatures.

Aware of a planned pro-Palestinian protest, Cal Poly officers were dispatched to a career fair being held at the Recreation Center on Jan. 23. After a small group of protestors dressed in all black and wearing masks, attempted to push though barricades, Cal Poly officers called SLO police to provide backup.

Even though most of the 30 to 40 protestors were peaceful, the small group repeatedly attempted to push though the barricades and into the job fair, which Cal Poly said was not open to the public.

While several officers scuffled with protestors, one protestor allegedly grabbed an officer’s gun. An officer appears to strike the protestor three times. Another officer then walked over and grabbed the firearm from under the protestor, according to a video taken from a rooftop.

SLO County prosecutors filed charges of battery against Martinez and eight protesters on March 4.

The eight other people face misdemeanor charges of battery of a peace officer, including Daron Birkholz, 23; Raleigh Delk, 26; Marcus Hicks, 26; Alejandro Bupara, 29; Sarah Heath, 30;  Elyzajaenine Santos, 23; Timothy Jouet, 56, and 20-year-old Mollie Lamkin – who goes by “Ollie.”

Lamkin is also facing a misdemeanor charge of resisting, obstructing or delaying a peace officer.

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If only she committed these crimes on January 6, 2021 at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., then they would be ok or maybe never happened at all.

Well, I’m just glad none of ya’ll are judges. I sincerely doubt you would make the same call if one of your pals was in this situation. I even question if any of you actually acquired a higher education.

Not wanting to see thousands (literally) of innocent children murdered using US funds to do it is not “supporting Islamic terrorism”. But forming educated opinions and learning to express them is an integral part of becoming an informed and effective citizen in a democracy and a very important part of becoming educated.

She is obviously not using her best judgement. But anyone who got where she is now did have much better skills in that area, so it is safe to assume her serious lapse in judgement is likely a temporary and correctable condition. Don’t we have enough people who have been tossed on the rubbish heap in this society? Or are the creek beds and parks not full enough of ruined lives? Or are you that eager to help create one more burden on society?

I wonder how many of you pretend to adhere to “Christian values”? From the “votes”, I would assume not many. Seems like the lot of you are sitting at home with a pile of rocks at your side, just waiting to cast the first anonymous stone. It takes absolutely no courage to do that.

No excuse for her crimes. Not becoming behavior for college professor paid by the taxpayer. Cal Poly needs to rethink who they hire to educate students.

Oh, you bring up “Christian Values”? Is she asking for forgiveness? This in not personal, it has nothing to do with forgiving her for her bad behavior. Rather a Judgement as a “Professor” ,she has an ethical obligation to her students, to guide them down appropriate paths. Something she has obviously failed to do. NO ONE is ok with the death of innocent children. But there are appropriate ways to express your opinions and view points. And obviously the fact that MS. Martinez guided these 20+year old kids down this dark path to being arrested…the responsibility lies with Her! Society is tired of Teachers and Professors using their own political agenda’s to manipulate young students into behaviors that will have a negative impact on that students lives. Simply because they have to pulpit to voice their personal feelings and views. AND obviously students are malleable. So those directly inline of influence have a Moral obligation to direct them from harms way.

She could have expressed her convictions in a positive manner, that would have been heard and respected by All! instead of disregarded by most, because of her unethical manner.

They are adults. They have free will.

I agree, but they are still students being preached to by a Professor who is influencing them. Obviously she has more influence with some students more than others. As a teacher, I feel she still has an obligation not to abuse her position by showing how to break the law!

A drunk driver who assaults police officers and supports islamic terrorism is unfit to be a college professor.

I wouldn’t even want her as a neighbor.

While her behavior in both of these incidences was deeply regrettable, especially the DUI, I do not see ending her career as the best alternative. It takes many years of study and quite a lot of very hard work, not to mention financial burden to attain the position this woman has achieved. We are already short on educational instructors. Every one of them counts. IMHO, the judge should require her to get treatment for her alcohol problem, which is interfering with her judgement at this point, and go from there.

No real harm was yet done, except to herself, and it is inappropriate to judge someone’s whole life based on what could well be a temporary condition, if it is properly and.sincerely addressed. We have no idea what this woman has been through that would explain he current situation. Sometimes it is in all our best interests to show a bit of compassion, especially when so little of the facts are known.

No compassion for hitting police officers and driving around drunk. If found guilty she should pay the price just like anybody else.

Everybody other than LEOs or other special people, they get a pass.

I disagree, in that an individual who strikes a police officer should not be teaching youth.

I dunno. She should teach people how to strike police officers…effectively.

Seriously, in these days of Uber, why are you excusing drunk driving?

Would we still need to show her compassion if she’d killed someone?

Furthermore, what kind of example is she providing to these young, impressionable people? I am sure her lectures are full of themes of rage and oppression, which result in “mostly peaceful” protests like the one described above. I know one of those kids who got arrested in January. Not good.


They are all babies compared to me, sadly. Time has marched on.

No, Francesca, She Does deserve to lose her job!! Attacking police, having felonies, does NOT make a respectable Professor. Ask the Students parents, whom are most likely paying for their education. Would you choose to have your student be taught by a rioting extremist with an severe alcohol problem? Sorry, but there are many out there whom have held themselves to a higher level of decency.

She does deserve to be fired. She obviously needs to go into some kind of treatment center, get her life together. Do some soul searching. And maybe IF she is able to fix her own life, come back in 5 to 10 years after she has dealt with her own mental health issues. But really, she shouldn’t be around students.

“Rioting extremist with a severe alcohol problem”? And you can pass judgement based on the charges, without any details of either incident? “5 or 10 years”? Would you like to see any of your friends lose their livelihood for that length of time, without trial, based solely on the sparse details of this article? I bet you would be very quick to cry “fowl” and “government overreach”, etc., etc. Especially if they had to spend as much and work as hard as she did to get where they were. Obviously you think you are above something like this happening to yourself.

Thankfully, we do not yet live in a society where lynch mobs again roam the streets with nothing better to do than “punish” others based on assumptions. That is the “higher standard” I would prefer to hold myself to.

Actually we do have these mobs -this incident is a great example of that.

LinnieB / Francesca Bolognini: Enough.

Learn by doing (time!).

Judge, throw the Indigenous literature book at her please.

How can you have any credibility when you align with Hamas?

Strip her of her teaching credentials… she is not fit to instruct our young people…

Wow. Would you be so quick to pass judgement on someone who has likely attained a position requiring as much work and sacrifice as she did if you had to use your real name? I seriously doubt it.

Yes, we would. Especially if all her “hard work and sacrifice” did not include, obeying the law.

At what point, do you feel “hard work and sacrifice” is not enough to counter physically attacking police officers? At what point, does “hard work and sacrifice” trump full knowledge of the consequences of drinking and driving?

If she claims ignorance of societal rules about such incredibly dangerous activities, at what point does her “hard work and sacrifice”, highlight intelligence?

That would suggest you take assaulting an officer lightly?

No way would I give my real name with how some people seek to destroy those who disagree with them today… Act like adults and that may change but the last thing I want is a mob at my gates…

You are more forgiving of unlawful behavior, than most people.

I agree. It’s sad that standards are slipping at Cal Poly.

While I disagree with the barbaric treatment of those in Gaza, I do not find our educational institutions to be a forum for protest. There are many other way to protest, the best being economically to those who support such gynecide by guns and starvation, etc. It is as though history is repeating itself for all to see. So confusing?

Educational institutions have been THE hotbed for protests for hundreds of years. This is not like some kind of woke trend. However misguided the protests may be, educational institutions are erfect place to learn to excercise first amendment rights. They are also a largely controlled environment so protests on campuses do not generally interfere with people going about their daily lives

Rile up the Kindergartens!!!!!

Yes, I remember SF State 1968, where the students through the typewriters out the window. Maybe hunger protests would be a little more vested in your convictions.