An attorney appointed to serve as the 357th State District Court judge in Brownsville has vowed to restore public trust in a county tarnished by judicial scandals.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry appointed Oscar Xavier Garcia on Thursday to serve as the 357th State District Court judge following the retirement of Judge Leonel Alejandro.
Garcia, who has a civil law office in Brownsville but lives in Port Isabel where his wife is superintendent, spoke to Action 4 News about the appointment.
"It's really an honor to be appointed by the governor to sit as a judge in this court," Garcia said. "And hopefully, restore some of the public trust of the judiciary."
The appointment comes following two years of scandals that have ended in federal charges for a former judge, a former district attorney, five attorneys and five others.
Garcia said he was approached by local attorneys to apply for the position and hopes to bring transparency to the court as well as avoid any appearance of impropriety.
"I expect to uphold the integrity and independence of that court," Garcia said.
Under the terms of state law, Garcia's term as appointed by the governor expires following the next election for the office, which is scheduled for November 2014 election.
Garcia, who identifies himself as a Republican, told Action 4 News that he plans to run for the office as a Republican candidate in the 2014 primaries.
The Port Isabel attorney received a bachelor TMs degree and a law degree from the University of Texas at Austin but has also served the College of the State Bar of Texas, the State Bar of Texas Grievance Panel and the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners.