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Texas congresswoman fired after using her boyfriend’s taser on her three children

A Texas congresswoman has been relieved of her duties after she was found using her boyfriend’s taser on her three children aged 8, 11 and 12.

Former Harris County 4 Deputy Constable Xochitl Ortiz, 34, appeared in court on May 20 to face three counts of injuring children under 15.

Each count carries a 10-year prison sentence under Texas law.

Ortiz was a two-year veteran of the force. Her boyfriend, former deputy Christopher Worthington, was also fired from the department. He joined in October 2020.

The alleged abuse happened at Ortiz’s flat in the town of Tomball between April 1 and April 4 this year.

Meanwhile, Ortiz is accused of “stunning” her children with an “electric self-defense device.” It is believed that she used the Taser service of her assistant colleague.

Former Harris County 4 Deputy Constable Xochitl Ortiz is charged with causing injury to children under 15

Texas congresswoman fired after using her boyfriend’s taser on her three children

Ortiz’s boyfriend, Christopher Worthington, joined the department in October 2020. He was also fired for violating force policies.

According to Police1, a “drive-stun” is “generally considered a pain compliance technique that is a lesser quantum of force than the deployment of probes”.

Prosecutors say the children spoke to their father, who is divorcing their mother, about the alleged abuse.

They said they had been tasered to the bottom, hand and shoulder. Ortiz’s children reported the alleged abuse to their father and that they “don’t feel safe” in her home, a probable cause finding prosecutors filed in Harris County District Court, adding that the boys “made consistent reports of abuse” by their mother to state child welfare workers. Ortiz and the children’s father are currently going through a divorce.

He then reported Ortiz to authorities on April 14. Ortiz was arrested on May 18.

The hearing officer during the court appearance told Ortiz: ‘The facts allege that you used a Taser to taser each of your children: one on the hand, one on the buttocks, one on the shoulder . The facts allege that the complaining witnesses complained of shock and pain and do not feel safe at your home,” KTRK reports.

Ortiz was taken into custody. As of this writing, Ortiz is no longer listed as an inmate at the Harris County Jail, meaning she has posted bond.

His bail had been set at $450,000, it was later lowered to $150,000.

According to Ortiz’s financial disclosure document, his income is $2,500 per month. She has more than $4,500 in monthly expenses and $300 in the bank.

Ortiz’s attorney, Russell Neumann, told KTRK that his client maintains her innocence and intends to “fight” the allegations against her.

Texas congresswoman fired after using her boyfriend’s taser on her three children

Ortiz is a two-year veteran of the department. Her boyfriend was also fired from the department

The taser that was used in the incident belonged to Worthington, Ortiz’s boyfriend.

Worthington was fired from his job for violating department policy but does not currently face any criminal charges.

In a statement, former Ortiz boss Constable Mark Herman said: “On April 14, 2022, my office received a complaint regarding these allegations and immediately initiated an investigation.” My office, along with investigators from the Harris County Sheriff’s Office worked together, culminating in my office taking ex-deputy Xochitl Ortiz into custody and turning her over to investigators.

The terms of Ortiz’s bond include being within 200 feet of her children, staying away from their father, her boyfriend, weapons, objects that look like weapons as well as away from alcohol and drugs.

Texas congresswoman fired after using her boyfriend’s taser on her three children

Ortiz said at the back of the empty courtroom as she heard prosecutors claim her children did not feel safe with her

Texas congresswoman fired after using her boyfriend’s taser on her three children

Ortiz’s attorney maintained his innocence in a statement and insisted his client intended to fight the charges.

Ortiz’s children told authorities during the inquest that they did not feel safe with their mother, KHOU reports.

The largest Taser manufacturer in the United States, Axon, advises against Taser use on children on its website.

According to Strategies for Youth, a nonprofit that seeks to improve relationships between young people and law enforcement, Tasers are too frequently used on children.

A report by the group states in part: “Physically and emotionally, they react very differently from adults to stress, trauma and physical assault. Unfortunately, law enforcement in this country often fails to recognize that young people need an entirely different set of tools and strategies when encountering and interacting than adults.

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