Port Isabel City Commissioner Place 2 Maria de Jesus or “MJ” Garza is seeking re-election but Robin Sagnes Ochoa also wants the seat - and apparently friendly competition in this case, may have gone too far.
Cameron County Sheriff Deputies arrested Ochoa's husband, Orlando Ochoa Sr., and his son Orlando Ochoa, Jr. for assaulting a man they allegedly first hired for dirty politics.
"He was hired by Orlando Ochoa to illegally remove political adds in the City of Port Isabel…under the condition that he would pay him $5 per sign that he took down," Cameron County Chief Deputy Gus Reyna said.
According to Reyna, witnesses reported the man taking down Garza's signs, to Port Isabel Police.
Officers arrested Duvillo Grava and charged him with theft. That's when he told officers that Ochoa hired him.
Police records state, that same day, the Ochoa's took matters into their own hands.
"Grava was assaulted by Orlando Ochoa and Orlando Ochoa, Jr., for telling Port Isabel P.D. that Orlando Ochoa paid him to take off the political signs,” Reyna said.
Documents state Ochoa Sr. yelled obscenities and repeatedly punched the man on the head and body, while threatening to kill him if he didn't obey him Later Ochoa Jr. kicked Grava, records state, while he begged him to stop.
Commissioner Garza declined to comment on camera, but did confirm that more than five signs valued, at about $15 each, were stolen from homes or businesses.
She said the ordeal is surprising because Ochoa Sr., is her own cousin.
Right now, Ochoa Sr. is charged for retaliation, assault, terroristic threat and tampering with witnesses for a bond of over $125,000.
Ochoa, Jr. is charged with retaliation and assault for a $100,000 bond.
"It can be a bicycle- it doesn't make a difference what it is- the thing is that you're committing a crime by taking something that doesn't belong to you," Reyna said.
Early Voting is from April 28 to May 6; Election Day is May 10.