A “crazy fat lady” has been reporting as an eye witness on crime at the Texas border and apparently police aren’t too happy about it. Priscilla Villarreal Treviño of Loredo, Texas, has nearly 84,000 Facebook followers who state that they trust her live video reports from crime scenes as authentic and informative.
Often peppered with Spanish profanities, Treviño rushes to crime scenes and reports live from her phone. As she videos the scene, she begins with, “Lagordiloca, reporting what’s happening — buenas noches.”
Lagordiloca is a play on words from the Spanish phrase, “la gorda loca,” or “the crazy fat lady.” Her followers are from all over America– from Los Angeles to Chicago, New York and Puerto Rico.
Treviño is what Sam Houston would have described as a Texican. She’s a Mexican-American citizen who happens to report on crime at the Texas border where she lives. She’s not easy to miss. The Los Angeles Times describes her as:
the tattooed video blogger with a cascade of curls tucked under her rhinestone cap deliver bilingual nightcrawler-style reports on car crashes, shootings and other violent crime.
Noticias de Última de hora!! (Laredo,Tx) A woman was transported to a local hospital after being hit by a vehicle by Springfield between Locust and Plum. Driver of the vehicle that hit her fled the scene. No word of the condition of the woman at this moment…. #LaGordiLoca
Posted by Lagordiloca News LaredoTx on Saturday, January 13, 2018
The Laredo Police Department, however, don’t like her showing up at crime scenes and recording events live. Last month they charged her with two counts “of misuse of official information,” which is a third-degree felony.
Treviño was charged because she posted the name of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture supervisory program manager who committed suicide, before the police department officially released the information. She was charged by the police for posting information she received from the police. Let that sink in.
Despite the attempt to silence her right to free speech, Treviño complied and turned herself in, and was briefly jailed. She is fighting the charges, maintaining that the Laredo Police Department violated her First Amendment protected right to free speech.
In Texas, citizens often make citizens arrests– another right protected by the U.S. Constitution. Citizens also video interaction with police or events that they witness on their phones and posting them on social media.
The use of technology has changed how people respond to injustice and unfair circumstances. Take the teacher who was kicked out of her seat at the Bush Intercontinental Airport because of the entitled Texas congresswoman, Sheila Jackson Lee. Or the Houston musician who was kicked off her flight for breastfeeding her baby by Spirit Airlines. Outraged travelers recorded and posted on Facebook their eyewitness account. Their friends and fans share the stories and it led to outrage on many levels that two airlines would treat women this way.
Here’s another woman using her phone and Facebook, offering an eyewitness account of crime at the Texas border– a story that needs to be told. Most Americans are unaware and unaccustomed to the amount of crime that occurs at the border. Border security isn’t just about illegals, but encompasses sex and drug trafficking that endangers Americans who live in some of the most dangerous towns in America.
Doesn’t Treviño have a right to record what she sees and hears and detail her experience as a Mexican-American living in a border town? Couldn’t the police use her as an asset rather than arrest her?
Here’s a woman who is actually doing something. Who is actually taking action.