Breaking News: Tax Assessor Patricia Barrera booked on gambling charges
May 15, 2009
May 15, 2009
It's been almost two years since the attorney general's office began investigating the Webb County Tax Assessor Collector’s office... And today a warrant was issued for the arrest of Patricia Barrera. The warrant comes just one day after an indictment came down in district court outlining charges against the office's deputy chief. The charges are from an investigation that began back in 2007. Patricia Barrera was inside the Webb County jail this afternoon as she turned herself in on three different charges. The warrant was signed by Justice of the Peace Oscar Liendo. Investigators from the Attorney General's office were at the District Attorney's Office to prepare the warrant for Patricia Barrera. We’re told she faces three charges one gambling promotion, possession of gambling device and keeping of gambling place. The case goes back to October of 2007 when the Attorney General's office went into Barrera’s office and confiscated computers and documents for their investigation. Webb County Judge Danny Valdez says "Barrera will have to go to court": " She is innocent until proven guilty. She is going to have her day in court. We need to do is just wait and see what happens." Jerry Garza, Webb County Commissioner "We've got to let the judicial process take its course. It’s unfortunate that this has to happen. Anyone is innocent until proven guilty." In the indictment from 2007 some employees say they were forced to sell raffle tickets on the clock. Webb county officials say they will not tolerate that behavior. " Unfortunately I know it happens. But I think in our case when once we discover it and it’s happening the commissioners should take zero tolerance on it, If proven guilty Barrera could serve up to a year in prison for each count".