Cameron County Sheriff Eric Garza became the newly elected Sherif, on or about January 1, 2021. During the weeks to follow, Sheriff Garza made changes to the ranks of the Sheriff’s Department.
During the transition, a tenured captain named Javier Reyna was removed from many of his functions. Reyna filed a lawsuit on the matter and claimed he was retaliated against for his First Amendment expressions related to political activities. Specifically, Reyna was a public supporter of prior Sheriff Omar Lucio and participated in some form in Lucio’s re-election campaign.
In cause 1:21-cv-00067, filed in US District Court, Southern District of Texas, Sheriff Garza made a claim, per an “Order and Opinion,” filed and entered on October 29, 2021, that:
he was authorized to transfer Reyna from a policymaking position that required loyaltyCase 1:21-cv-00067 Document 17 Filed on 10/29/21 in TXSD Page 3 of 21
As the matter stands, the motions to dismiss the cause against Sheriff Eric Garza were denied.
On November 1, 2021, the Court has ordered mediation to the concerns of Reyna; however, Sheriff Eric Garza has motioned a disinterest in mediation.