Warrant: Former Smith County Elections Administrator has a history of bullying employees

Crime & Public Safety

TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Newly revealed court documents involving the arrest of former Smith County elections official Denise Hernandez showed multiple employees accusing her of being a bully toward them.

Hernandez was arrested last week and accused of spiking drinks that she gave employees with colon cleanser and did not tell them until after they finished. She had originally told them they were energy drinks.

Hernandez has been charged with two counts of assault and has been released on a $20,000 bond. The incident occurred back on April 27 with multiple employees witnessing the act and spoke with Smith County deputies.

An arrest warrant revealed that several workers told investigators that Hernandez was a bully and continuously made fun of the employees for consuming the drinks. She also pulled the trick despite knowing the victims had prior medical conditions that could be exacerbated by drinking the cleanser.

The documents also stated that two of the victims went home from work and were worried about the pain the colon cleanser caused to their stomachs. One employee told deputies that Hernandez would “poke her breast or make fun of her.”

Two other male employees backed up the victims’ accounts to investigators, saying that Hernandez was a bully and had heard her bragging about the incident.

Under Texas law, the assault charges means Hernandez is facing a total of one year in prison for each charge and up to a $4,000 fine.

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