SMITH COUNTY–Former Henderson County and Smith County Elections Administrator Denise Hernandez, is accused of giving two female employees of the Smith County elections office colon cleanser disguised as “Spark” energy drink.
The incident is reported to have occurred April 27 inside the Smith County Elections Office, but investigators received the information from human resources officials May 17. The case was then assigned to an investigator with the Smith County Sheriff’s Office.
When the investigators contacted the two victims who are employed in the election’s office, both victims advised that they were each given a cup containing a pink liquid substance by their supervisor, Denise Hernandez. Hernandez was the elections administrator for Smith County during the incident. She informed the victims that the cup contained “Spark” energy drink. The employees consumed the drink believing the drink to be what it was purported by Hernandez.
A short time after Hernandez returned and asked both employees if they had finished their drinks and placed a container of colon cleanser on the counter and began making fun of them for drinking the product. Both employee’s suffered pain and discomfort after ingesting the product. It was also alleged that Hernandez continued to laugh and berate the employee’s for drinking the product when they returned to work.
Two arrest affidavits were presented to 7th State District Judge Kerry Russell May 26. After reviewing each affidavit, Russell issued two warrants on Hernandez for Assault Causes Bodily Injury (Class A Misdemeanor) with a bond of $10,000 on each charge.
Hernandez turned herself in on both warrants and was booked into the Smith County Jail June 1. She was bonded out a short time later.
Hernandez submitted a letter of resignation May 3, effective May 7, to Smith County Judge Nathaniel Moran after only being in her position for three months. The Smith County Elections Commission accepted her resignation after Hernandez sent a second letter May 4 rescinding her resignation.