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Bexar County insurer to pay $395K to deputy fired after posting selfies from Jan. 6 insurrection

Bexar County Sheriff's Office
Bexar County Sheriff's Office

A Bexar County Sheriff's lieutenant who was fired after posting selfies at the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection will be paid a $395,000 legal settlement.

The county's insurer will pay the federal out-of-court settlement to Roxanne Mathai, who claimed the action violated her First Amendment rights and was a retaliation over her political beliefs.

Mathai, who worked at the Bexar County Jail, attended the rally in support of then-President Donald Trump on Jan. 6, 2021, and took selfies as the crowd marched toward the Capitol.

She said she never entered the Capitol and returned to her hotel room instead.

Mathai also said she was shocked to later see TV coverage of the mob clashing with police and forcing its way into the building to stop the certification of Joe Biden as president. She was never charged in the insurrection.

Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar began investigating Mathai's actions the day after the insurrection.

“To know that somebody at some point that wore this uniform stood by and watched and took pictures, I don’t know what her general attitude was about that. That’s infuriating,” Salazar said at the time.

Mathai was fired four months later. She sued the county and Salazar in 2022, seeking damages for back pay, future pay and emotional distress.

Salazar said in a statement Tuesday that the termination was done within policy and upheld by an arbitrator.

"The decision to issue a settlement was made outside the BCSO," Salazar said. "There was no wrongdoing on the part of the administration, and I stand by our actions."

On April 9, Bexar County Commissioners approved paying the $100,000 deductible amount for the insurance carrier to take over the defense and resolution of the lawsuit.

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