Judge rules in favor of Edinburg council member in charter violation case

EDINBURG — Councilman Homer Jasso Jr. will remain in office, a state district judge ruled Friday morning.

Jasso came under fire earlier this year, when fellow council members found him guilty of violating the charter by profiting from the city.

State District Judge Mario E. Ramirez Jr. said he found no mens rea, or guilty mind, on Jasso’s behalf because the councilman reached out to Edinburg City Manager Richard Hinojosa and then city attorney Rick Palacios.

Ramirez called the council’s attempt to remove Jasso from office “an abuse of discretion” and “arbitrary.”

Jasso was not in court Friday morning. It’s unknown if he remains hospitalized after being transported to Doctors Hospital at Renaissance Thursday morning.

The ruling is a blow to the new administration, who indicated Friday, “it’s time to move on.”

The issue had been in play since last year, when news first broke that Jasso’s tire recycling company — Santa Anita Reclamation Project LLC, of which he owned a 15 percent stake — had done business with the city. Jasso is no longer associated with the company.