Former Texas State Senate Candidate Says She Was ‘Gagged, Bound, Tortured’ in Attack

Former Texas State Senate Candidate Says She Was ‘Gagged, Bound, Tortured’ in Attack
Police tape in a stock photo. (Carl Ballou/Shutterstock)
Jack Phillips

A former Texas State Senate candidate said she was beaten and tortured at a hotel, and officials said three people were arrested in connection with the attack.

Vanessa Tijerina, a Republican who lost in the Nov. 3 election, said she was called to the Texas Inn in Raymondville about "something very important regarding her safety," according to KVEO.

Then, she was gagged, tied up, and tortured in the hotel on Christmas Eve, she said in a Facebook Live video.

“They made it seem like they had something really, really important to tell me and they couldn’t tell me on the phone,” Tijerina, 42, said, referring to what the callers had told her.

“I was beaten. I was terrorized, bound, gagged, tortured,” Tijerina also claimed on Monday.

The woman said the perpetrators "stole everything" from her, including her car, money, and her children's presents for Christmas.

Officials arrested Amanda Salinas, Ariel Vera, and Raymond Santana in connection with the attack, police told KVEO.

Authorities haven't released any further details about the attack. It's not clear if Tijerina knew her alleged assailants before the incident, and it's also not clear if Tijerina was attacked because of her political affiliation.

Tijerina said she “did nothing to deserve this," adding: "I was an innocent person."

During the attack, she recalled: "I never fought back because I knew that if I fought back it was going to go worse for me and I probably wouldn't survive.. and I needed to survive for my daughters."

Tijerina also remarked: "The one person that's absolutely missing from this is the person who was giving the orders for the torture. That person still has not be found or identified yet."

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