Texas Police Officer Fired For Attending Capitol Riots, Posting Selfies

The Bexar County Sheriff's Office of Texas has fired Lieutenant Roxanne Mathai after she made Facebook posts touting her participation in the January 6 Capitol insurrection. She has not been criminally charged.

"......And we are going in......in the crowd at the stairs...not inside the capitol like the others," Mathai wrote in one of her posts. She included a selfie of her wearing a red, white and blue mask and draped in a flag declaring support for President Donald Trump.

"THIS IS TRUMP NATION" another photo post of hers declared, alongside red, white and blue hearts. "Not gonna lie.....aside from my kids, this was, indeed, the best day of my life. And it's not over yet," she wrote in a third post along with more photos of the rioters.

A 35-second video obtained by KSAT showed Mathai walking towards the Capitol steps and declaring, "We're going in, tear gas and all. Tear gas don't bother me."

In the images, Mathai seemed to be standing in an area past the barricades that police had placed around the Capitol, KSAT reported.

Bexar Texas police officer fired Capitol riots
The Bexar County Sheriff’s Office of Texas has fired Lieutenant Roxanne Mathai after she posted images on Facebook touting her participation in the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol. In this photo, Trump supporters clash with police and security forces, as they storm the US Capitol in Washington, DC, on January 6, 2021. Brendan Smialowski / AFP/Getty

Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar said his staff forwarded her images to Washington, D.C. law enforcement and the FBI.

"Whether it happens here within the confines of these four walls or whether it happens in another state or another country, you break the law, I promise I'm going to hold you accountable here," Salazar said of Mathai in January. "My intent is that she never set foot in this [the sheriff's office] again."

Mathai's lawyer, Hector Cortes, said that she never entered the Capitol. He said that she only approached the Capitol after police had cleared the rioters and before a district curfew had been put in place.

Mathai also claimed that she had been hundreds of feet behind rioters and didn't know about the violence that had occurred during the riots. Cortes said that Mathai's statements about entering the Capitol were just untrue bragging.

Mathai can appeal her dismissal if she chooses. She had been on administrative leave since October 2020 as investigators examined allegedly inappropriate text messages between her and an inmate. Cortes said the messages came from a prisoner using a contraband phone. He added that Mathai notified her supervising officer immediately after receiving the messages.

The insurrection occurred when Trump supporters invaded the Capitol seeking to overturn the results of the 2020 election. Five people died during the insurrection and roughly 140 police officers were injured. The police injuries include a broken spine, a lost eye, lost fingers, brain damage and multiple cases of PTSD. Two Capitol Police officers have died by suicide since the insurrection.

While ransacking the Capitol, the rioters shattered windows while trying to access congressional chambers, smeared feces in the hallway and stole computer equipment, potentially constituting a national security breach.

Newsweek contacted Cortes for comment.