Mercedes superintendent arrested, charged with interference with public duties

Carolyn Mendiola

Mercedes ISD Superintendent Carolyn Mendiola was arrested Friday and charged with interference with public duties.

Mendiola was arraigned at the Alamo Municipal Court and assigned a $5,000 bond before being booked in the Hidalgo County jail. She was released shortly afterwards.

According to the district, its board of trustees will meet Thursday to discuss the superintendent’s employment with the district.

“The safety and security of Mercedes ISD students and staff is the District’s top priority,” a statement said. “All matters dealing with personnel at Mercedes ISD are taken seriously, with respect to privacy, and addressed in accordance with law and policies. The Mercedes ISD Board of Trustees have been made aware of the Mercedes ISD Superintendent’s arrest.”

Mercedes school board President Oscar Hernandez said the school district’s attorney notified him about a warrant being out for Mendiola’s arrest a little before noon Friday.

“He said the police officers issued out a warrant of arrest and she needs to present herself,” Hernandez said.

Hernandez believes the warrant is related to an ongoing investigation. 

A number of district employees have been arrested recently on a variety of charges.

Hernandez said the news was shocking.

“I was actually stunned,” he said.

It was not immediately clear why Mendiola was arraigned in Alamo.

Mercedes PD issued a release that confirmed the arrest and nothing else.

Mendiola’s arrest comes after more than a year of turmoil and scandal at the district, which has escalated in recent months 

The superintendent had, in fact, announced her intention to retire less than a month ago.

That announcement followed the board’s decision to deny a request from Mendiola to delay a campus move, in part because of inadequate facilities.

It’s unclear what ongoing investigation Mendiola’s arrest may be related to, but there have certainly been a good deal of criminal investigations into district personnel.

Mendiola is at least the fifth MISD employee to be arrested since last spring.

In April 2021, a former coach was arrested on sexual misconduct allegations. Just last month another teacher was arrested on sexual misconduct allegations.

This week a security guard at the district was arrested for allegedly making threats against the high school and a teacher was also arrested on charges of injuring a disabled child.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with the full version.