Friday, May 25, 2012

May 1978: J.C. Martin Indicted

A little Laredo history:
Beginning in 1977 Taxpayers Organized for Public Service, spearheaded by Lawrence Berry, a disgruntled, self-employed handyman, began examining city accounts and uncovered fraud in the street department. The resultant scandal spelled the end for the Independent Club. In November 1977 J. C. Martin, Jr., announced he would not seek reelection. In the April 1978 city election six candidates sought the office of mayor. Aldo Tatangelo, son of Italian immigrants and a political independent, was easily elected. A month after the elections Martin was indicted by a federal grand jury on one count of mail fraud and ordered to pay a $1,000 fine and $201,118 to the city in restitution, and was sentenced to serve thirty weekends in the Webb County Jail. In 1979, as a result of the strong mayoral system of government that had existed in Laredo for more than eighty years, the city council approved a new city charter establishing a city council-manager government.
J.C. Martin was indicted May 8, 1978, to be exact.

May is a pretty big month for Laredo.  Villa de San Agustin de Laredo was officially recognized May 15, 1755.

If there's some other significant fact about Laredo that occurred in the month of May, we could actually make it the official Month of Laredo.  What say you?

UPDATE: October 19, 2019 -- Jury indicts former mayor.

"The investigation began after a Laredo radio station, KVOZ, received copies of receipts from CP&L files that detailed three instances of labor or other services provided to Martin without cost."

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