Trial for Brownsville ISD school board trustee scheduled for next week

Local News

Brownsville, Texas (KVEO)–The trial for a Brownsville school board trustee is scheduled to take place on October 26, according to court records.

Sylvia P Atkinson was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in December after being indicted by a grand jury.

According to court documents, Atkinson accepted money in exchange for placing an item on the school board agenda, according to court records. A grand jury indicted Atkinson on one count of conspiracy, one count of bribery and six counts of violating the federal Travel Act.

She pleaded not guilty to all charges, said records.

Atkinson’s indictment states that in exchange for using her influence in contracting decisions with Rio Hondo ISD and Brownsville ISD, Atkinson would demand and receive money which was said to be “campaign contributions” but, the indictment says they were actually bribes and the money was not reported as campaign contributions. The indictment added that Atkinson would either keep all or a portion of the money for herself.

In March, The State of Texas by and through the Cameron County District Attorney filed a Petition seeking the removal of Sylvia Atkinson from her post on the School Board of Brownsville ISD.

The petition was assigned to the107th District Court, where Judge Benjamin Euresti recused himself.  The 5th Presiding Judge of the 5th Administrative Region assigned Senior Judge J. Miguel Banales to oversee the removal action

Federal prosecutors and attorneys who represent Atkinson selected a jury last week.

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