Embattled Bexar County Precinct Two Constable Michelle Berrientes Vela stood on the steps of the Bexar County Courthouse today and proclaimed her innocence in a number of controversies which have touched her office, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Supporters of Barrientes Vela held signs declaring the allegations which have been made against her areport of a 'good old boy' network who don't want a Hispanic female Constable in the county.
One allegation is that Barrientes Vela's deputies 'shook down' picknickers at a west side park on Easter Sunday, allegedly demanding cash from families enjoying Easter in Rodriguez Park.
"The accusations pertaining to Rodriguez Park," she said. "I don't know what they have, because there is nothing that they have."
She said she can't exonerate her and her deputies because the all-male Bexar County Commissioners Court has repeatedly ignored her request for body cameras for her deputies.
"We went ot be transparent to my community, because of misappropriate funding," she said.
Barrientes Vela repeatedly blasted District Attorney Joe Gonzales, claiming he improperly refused to prosecute charges her office had filed against a Deputy who has announced plans to run against her next year, alleging that he falsified official forms in which he filed complaints against her.
In fact, Barrientes Vela was accused of ordering her officers to 'slow walk' the deputy when he arrived at the County Jail to be booked on the charges, so the media could be called and take embarassing photos of the deputy that she can use in her 2020 re-election campiagn. She said it was the sheriff's office, not her deputies, who set the pace of the 'perp walk' proces, and accused a local TV station that first reported the allegations of 'lying about her.'
The charges against the Deputy were dropped just minutes after he was booked.
Barrientes Vela predicted that more allegations would be leveled against her in he coming days as punishment for speaking out against the 'Good Old Boy System.'
Gonzales said in an e-mail that he would have no comment on the Constable's claims.