Federal Judge Dismisses All Claims Against HISD and Trustee Marshall

Judge rules there is no evidence of bribery or contract manipulation

U.S. District Court Judge Keith P. Ellison has dismissed all claims in a lawsuit filed by a district contractor against the Houston Independent School District and Trustee Larry Marshall that had alleged bribery and manipulation of contracts.

“We are very pleased with the court’s decision to dismiss all claims against HISD and Trustee Marshall,” HISD Superintendent Terry Grier said.  “We always believed this would be the ultimate outcome because these claims were unwarranted.”

The civil suit accused Marshall, the Houston Independent School District, and two construction companies of a bribery and kickback scheme involving lucrative HISD contracts.

On Monday, the judge ruled in favor of the district and Marshall citing there was no evidence to prove the contracting was manipulated.

“With nearly 50 years of service to HISD, the district is incredibly pleased to see Trustee Marshall being able to transition off the board to more fully enjoy the retirement he has so rightfully earned,” said Grier.  “His legacy as a Houston educator and leader is preserved now that he is free from the cloud of suspicion of these claims.”

The district estimates it has spent over $1.5 million over three years in legal and court fees since the suit was filed in December 2010.

“I will encourage our board to pursue reimbursement for the legal fees that the district has spent defending itself against these unwarranted claims,” Grier said.  “The public funds entrusted to us belong to the children of HISD and should be used for learning.”