Victoria County JP candidates say race was friendly

Melissa Crowe By Melissa Crowe

March 5, 2014 at 5:01 p.m.
Updated March 4, 2014 at 9:05 p.m.

New leadership is heading to the Victoria County justice of the peace, Precinct 1, office.

Mary Ann Estrada Rivera won the Democratic Party nomination by 79 votes over incumbent Richard Castillo.

With her sister-in-law phoning in results from the elections office, Rivera said she started getting excited about 9:30 p.m., when the results changed to her favor. After the late night, she said Wednesday she was looking forward to relaxing and catching her breath before taking office Jan. 1.

"I had so much support from friends and family," Rivera, a 49-year-old certified licensed translator, said. "My husband was my backbone."

Castillo, 57, said he plans on spending the next nine months keeping up with the court docket, increasing revenues and working on the truancy program.

"We'll work hard to keep the office going the direction we want, so when we turn it over, she'll have an office going in a good direction that she can take in the direction she wants," Castillo said. "We'll make it an easy transition between the two of us."

Throughout the race, they kept it friendly, he said.

"We did the best we could, and that's just the way it is," Castillo said. "You never actually lose an election if people vote for you. You might not get elected, but you don't lose."

Castillo retired from the city before taking office as constable and then as justice of the peace.

"It's humbling to know you served somebody and did it the best you could," Castillo said. "These jobs are only here for us for a short time. This office will continue to grow with someone else."



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