FRANKLIN, Tennessee–Samuel Garza, the IRS agent charged with two counts of sexual battery by an authority figure, has replaced his Williamson County Public Defender’s Office attorney with a private attorney in a “notice of substitution” announced by the District Attorney’s Office in court Wednesday.
The move by Garza, who has been incarcerated in the Williamson County Jail since his arrest on Thursday due to his inability to post the required $200,000 bail, caught his public defender attorney by surprise.
As Breitbart News reported previously, a $200,000 bail for a Class C felony such as this is unusually high, and may be an indication the prosecution considers Garza to be a flight risk.
A source familiar with the case tells Breitbart News that Garza has hired Kyle Mothershead, a high profile and expensive criminal defense attorney with a strong track record of success, to replace the public defender. Mothershead, who graduated in the top ten percent of his class from Vanderbilt Law School in 2002 and has an extensive criminal defense and immigration practice in the Nashville area, did not respond to a call from Breitbart News to confirm he is Garza’s new attorney.
The notice of the new attorney has not yet been filed with the Williamson County Court Clerk.
It is unclear who is paying for Mothershead’s legal services.
A source in the Williamson County Public Defender’s Office tells Breitbart News it is their understanding Garza’s family has hired the new attorney.
As an employee of the Internal Revenue Service, Garza may be a member of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU). If so, the NTEU may be paying for Garza’s representation, both in the Williamson County criminal matter and in any administrative matters before the Internal Revenue Service.
Breitbart News has contacted the NTEU for comment on the case but has not received a response.
Breitbart News has also asked the Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) for comment, but has received no response beyond boilerplate email responses from the IRS and TIGTA.
The IRS emailed this statement to Breitbart News:
The IRS holds its employees to high standards and does not tolerate inappropriate behavior in the workplace or with taxpayers. When questions arise, the IRS works closely with the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration and other law-enforcement authorities as appropriate.
We cannot comment on specific matters.
TIGTA emailed this statement to Breitbart News:
TIGTA does not disclose any information about investigative activity. For information about IRS employees, please contact IRS media relations. Their number is 202-622-4000.
Sorry we cannot be of more assistance.
The number of unanswered questions concerning Garza’s actions–including whether the IRS is investigating whether he has engaged in this sort of alleged criminal activity before while acting in his official capacity–continues to grow.
Here are the eleven questions asked by Breitbart News that TIGTA refuses to answer:
1. Can you confirm that TIGTA has initiated an investigation into IRS agent Samuel Garza, who was arrested in Franklin, TN last week on 2 counts of sexual battery by an authority figure for alleged crimes committed during an audit he conducted of a female taxpayer in Fairview, TN last week?
2. Can you confirm Mr. Garza is or was an IRS employee?
3. If so, when was he hired?
4. Are you investigating the possibility of other alleged victims?
5. Is Mr. Garza still an IRS employee? If so, is he currently on administrative leave, either paid or unpaid? If not, when was he fired?
6. Was Mr. Garza born in the United States?
7. Is Mr. Garza an American citizen?
8. What is or was Mr. Garza’s job title and responsibilities?
9. What are Mr. Garza’s academic and educational qualifications?
10. Does Mr. Garza have any prior criminal record?
11. Does the IRS have a policy that prohibits male agents from conducting audits of female taxpayers when they are both alone?
Breitbart News has, however, been able to obtain additional information about Samuel Garza’s drivers license and driving history. Breitbart News obtained Garza’s drivers license number from the arrest warrant. When provided with that information, the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security offered this information:
Mr. Garza was first issued a TN non-commercial driver license on October 28, 2008. He was issued a renewal on December 30, 2013. He currently has a valid non-commercial driver license.
Mr. Garza’s driving record shows he was involved in a personal injury accident in Davidson County on March 22, 2010. He also completed a traffic school on March 21, 2013 for a traffic violation.
That is all that is listed on his TN driver history record.
The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security was unable to provide additional information about Garza, such as the state or country that issued his drivers license prior to his receipt of a Tennessee driver license in 2008. We also were unable to obtain any information concerning Garza’s place of birth.
Breitbart New can confirm, however, that according to court documents and public records, the alleged victim is the co-owner of a heavily trafficked retail business in Fairview, Tennessee, and that both alleged counts of sexual battery took place at a building located next door to the high traffic retail business.
According to the arrest warrant, Garza is a 36-year-old Hispanic male who resides in Hendersonville, Tennessee.
The two cases of sexual battery took place on Wednesday, September 2, and Thursday, September 3. Mr. Garza was arrested on September 3.
According to the affidavit of complaint, “On 9/2/15 Mr. Garza was at [the location in Fairview] in what he presented as his official capacity as an IRS agent involved in a tax audit of the company.”
The complaint continued:
Mr. Garza was dealing with the owner… Mr. Garza made sexual overtures and implied that the business could be lost without cooperation. Mr. Garza requested that [the victim] wear a dress the next day. [The victim] feared the loss of the business. Mr. Garza fondled her breasts and place[d] his head in her lap and alt[h]ough [the victim] was uncomfortable and asked him to stop, the conduct continued.
Mr. Garza returned to [the Fairview location] on 9/3/15. Mr. Garza placed a hand under [the victim’s] shirt and touched her inappropriately on her breasts. Mr. Garza placed his head in her lap. [The victim] was fearful, upset, and uncomfortable with Mr. Garza’s actions.
Garza had originally been scheduled for another court hearing on September 17, but in light of the change of counsel, that court date may be changed.