McALLEN, Texas (Border Report) — The former assistant sheriff who suddenly retired this week after he became the focus of an FBI investigation, has now been asked to step down as a board trustee for the largest school district in Laredo, Texas.
Board trustees for United Independent School District on Thursday evening unanimously adopted a “no-confidence” vote and resolution against trustee Ricardo “Rick” Rodriguez, and asked for him to resign, United ISD School Board President Ramiro Veliz III, told Border Report on Friday.
Veliz said the board did not have the authority to force his resignation, since he is an elected official. But he said they did put restrictions on the funds he has available and where he can go.
“We asked for his resignation; we did the no-confidence vote, we prohibited him from attending district events, being on district property. He’s still a sitting board member — and if he doesn’t resign, he has the ability to attend official meetings and workshops that we have, and exercise his authority as a board member. But it’s limited just to those functions. We also prohibited future travel for conferences, and also limiting the use of his discretionary funds for the upcoming school year,” Veliz told Border Report.
He said that after the FBI raided the Webb County Sheriff’s Office on Monday and Sheriff Martin Cuellar publicly named Rodriguez as the “focus” of the federal agency’s probe that other board trustees worried about his ability to perform his elected duties.
Cuellar says Rodriguez’s coronavirus sterilizing company that he operated during the pandemic is in question.
Rodriguez also last month turned himself into Laredo Police after allegations that he assaulted an emergency room doctor, according to media reports. A warrant was issued for Rodriguez’s arrest.
“This is the second incident that involved Mr. Rodriguez in a short period of time so they felt that his ability to continue as a board member is questioned,” Veliz said.
Veliz said the FBI did visit the administration offices for United ISD and requested information which he said “was already handed over but other than that, there has been no other subsequent visit or any interviews or anything to that effect with any employees or any other board members.”
United ISD has over 41,000 students and is the largest of three school districts in the border area of Laredo, Texas.
Rodriguez was not at Thursday night’s special meeting called by trustees, Veliz said.
Veliz on Friday morning signed the resolution, he said.
“We’re just waiting right now to see if he’s gonna consider our request and the resolution, and we’ll move forward,” he said.