San Antonio councilman uses Facebook to mock activist couple

March 29, 2019
Note: Council member Pelaez-Prada contacted Texas Monitor to say he had only recently learned of this article and asked for a chance to respond. 
His response:
“The job of an elected official brings me into contact with people from all walks of life and all sorts of viewpoints. That said, I have never met with, spoken with, corresponded with, or communicated with either of these people. I certainly did not send them the hostile messages and insults they claim I sent. I am perplexed and sad to hear these strange allegations and I don’t know where Mr. Foddrill got the idea that I wish him harm. Despite his claims, I harbor no ill will towards them and I wish them no harm.  Even though I don’t agree with him on many issues, Mr. Foddrill is worthy of dignity and respect and should not be subjected to harassment for expressing his viewpoints. Should the opportunity arise to ever communicate with him or meet him, Mr. Foddrill will be treated cordially. Mr. and Mrs. Foddrill have an unfettered first amendment right to engage government officials in any manner they wish and I will not discourage them or impede them from doing so.”

A San Antonio councilman took to Facebook to insult a man and his wife trying to report alleged corruption, sending private messages through the social media network to the couple suggesting they have severe mental health problems and dismissing their corruption complaint as “silly.”

“I’ve decided I can’t help you with any of this,” Councilman Manny Pelaez posted to the couple on Facebook Messenger on March 21 in regards to the corruption allegations from John and Susan Foddrill. “It is an indecipherable bowl of nonsense-spaghetti with a healthy serving of silly sauce poured on top of it.”

In another post on March 23, he shared a link to a local expert on psychosis and schizophrenia with the couple, adding: “Sending you all my prayers for a quick recovery.”

In a Facebook message dated March 16, Pelaez addressed Susan Foddrill directly, the Facebook message shows.

“Susan, stick with me! We’ll have your mental health problem fixed in no time! With John’s support and your daughter’s too, we’ll beat the monsters that haunt you. Team work Susan!! (prayer parentheses…) I just said a prayer for you ma’am. You’re welcome.”

In a later message that same day, Pelaez wrote: “I suspect it must be difficult and embarrassing to face your psychiatric illnesses, ma’am.” He also referenced the couple’s daughter again. “I don’t know your daughter’s special skills, but I’m sure she possesses one or two to help you face the dragons that lurk behind the mask of sanity you wear,” he wrote.

The posts raise questions of whether mental illness should be used as a punchline by a public official, particularly given that experts recently told the Legislature that one in five Texas adults experience a mental health condition every year. And a recent Bexar County Community Health Needs Assessment noted: “Of all principal diagnoses examined, the only hospitalization rate that has increased dramatically from 2010 is for mental illness.”

Pelaez did not return calls to his council office seeking comment.

“As somebody who’s been reporting corruption for a long time, I’m used to the insults,” John Foddrill told The Texas Monitor. “People have insulted me for years. And that’s me, that’s fine. But when a man insults my wife with these vulgar insults day after day after day, I’m not going to stand for that. This is my wife. We’ve been married 48 years. This is a nice, wonderful, beautiful lady.”

To be sure, Foddrill is a long-time and well-known San Antonio gadfly. Before Pelaez told Foddrill he was not interested in his corruption tips, some of which date back to 1982, Foddrill inundated Pelaez with information. And after Pelaez said he was not going to look into the issue further, the Foddrills continued to send information.

San Antonio Councilman Manny Palaez
San Antonio Councilman Manny Palaez

When Pelaez began his Facebook messages to the Foddrills suggesting they were mentally ill, John Foddrill publicly shared messages between him and the councilman showing how Pelaez initially appeared to be interested in his corruption tips. The Foddrills suggested there was something untoward about the councilman’s new lack of interest.

He and his wife also publicly called Pelaez “Manny the Magician” on Facebook, “for making reports of public/police/judicial corruption vanish,” complete with a caricature of Pelaez with a magician’s wand and a rabbit coming out of a top hat.

Still, Foddrill insists, “I’m not badgering this man.”

Foddrill said he stopped publishing publicly anything about Pelaez completely after the councilman’s continued messages to the couple.

“We even stopped posting many comments just to avoid any more personal attacks by him,” Foddrill said. “I try to stay calm, but I’m very, very, very upset and mad because this man has attacked my wife with these vulgar comments over and over again.”

To Holly Doggett, executive director of the Texas branch of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, or NAMI, people using mental illness as an insult is, sadly, not surprising.

“It’s an easy finger-pointing mechanism for people,” Doggett said. “I don’t agree with you, so you must have a mental illness. So, go take care of that, and you’ll be more aligned with the way I think.”

What would she do if she knew of a public figure using mental illness to insult people?

“I would share some of the NAMI ‘StigmaFree’ materials with them and try to help them understand that by using the language that they’re using, that they’re not only stigmatizing and demeaning the person that they are talking to, but they actually could be discouraging other people who do have a mental health condition from seeking treatment,” Doggett said. “I mean, oh my gosh, here’s a public official berating these people and calling them mentally ill and they’re not, but if I am, what would they say about me?”

She supplied to The Texas Monitor, links to NAMI’s programs designed to help erase the stigma surrounding mental health.

The links are here:

Nine ways to fight mental health stigma

Take the StigmaFree pledge

“There are still many barriers put up to keep people from seeking treatment,” Doggett said.

“Probably the biggest one is stigma. A major part of the work that NAMI does is to fight stigma, through public awareness campaigns, helping people understand what mental a health condition is, and that mental health conditions are not the bulk of the person who has a mental health condition. We talk about how stigma can keep people from seeking treatment when they need it.”

Pelaez is councilman for San Antonio District eight, which is in the city’s northwest district. Through the middle of the district runs I-10, and the district is flanked on the west by the city of Helotes, and on the east by the city of Shavano Park.

Trent Seibert can be reached at [email protected] or at 832-258-6119.


  1. Joe Ballard, this isn’t even about occupy. These loons are crying a river to anyone who will entertain their delusions, and if you don’t agree with them, they file false reports and slander you with false allegations to which they have no proof. While I was no friend of the council, this stuff is just amazingly far fetched. No wonder they blocked them from town hall meetings.

  2. Texas monitor a piece of advice. Take it or leave it. These people are to all appearances delusional. Feel free to contact me if you like. I was there from early October until sapd forced us out of hemisfair park for making 35 people and all our stuff disappear from under their ever sleeping eye.

    • Tami Kegley “Engaging with Tar babies” ? You are quite the racist. I can see the fodrills have excellent taste in friends and are keeping “good company” with the likes of you. That explains a lot. (Snark)

    • You obviously meant this in a racist context-

      tar baby
      1. A inextricable situation or difficult and pressing problem that often grows worse as one tries to deal with it.
      2. Offensive Slang Used as a disparaging term for a black person, especially a dark-skinned black child.

  3. Ever wonder why no one has taken any of this ridiculousness you spew seriously? Because there is no PROOF. Your fake, made up documents mean nothing in the real world. I strongly suggest you find someone else to falsely accuse. I refused to support your lies and false agenda back then and I refuse to support today. Don’t go away mad, just go away. The only terrorist here is you with your lies, false allegations and false police reports.

    • typical tactics by liberals…come onto a public forum…call people batshit crazy and stalkers and then get bent out of shape when the real facts come out…LMAO …please call your attorney as we can talk about atttorney Diego M Bernal, attorney Manny Perleaz, attorney Julian Castro, attorney Michael Bernard, attorney malinda Gaul, attorney Deborah Klein, attorney Joseph Hoelscher , attorney Edward Pina , Judge Antonia Arteaga and many other crooked officers of the court in Bexar County……..LOL

    • Susan Foddrill, I don’t know any of those people other than Deigo Bernal, and that’s only through “Citizens to be Heard” at City Hall, where I spoke often in front of him and other City Council Members. This also is on public records.That’s how I know of him. Your “List” is simply a list of people who “occupied”, nothing more more. You are making serious accusations of which you have no evidence. Where is your proof of these so called “terroristic threats”? Where is your “case number” against me? Where is your evidence of charges filed for such an act? Where is your evidence that I have been found guilty of such things? What a sad, miserable person you both must be that you continue to live in the past, well over 8years ago, making slanderous and liable accusations with no evidence to support such a statement. I find it troubling that you have such vitriole for people you don’t even know. if anything this probably proves that at the very least, you are not a stable individual and should seek therapy and leave community leaders alone. Keep digging that hole of insanity, I’ve got better things to do. I hope these folks realize just how nuts y’all are before you try to file false charges against them as well…. oh wait, you’ve already done that apparently multiple times. RME

  4. I refuse to get sucked into your craziness and I hope the TM can see through your BS. In fact, I encourage them to go pull the transcripts of my trial. My arrest and trial is on Public Record and it had absolutely NOTHING to do with either of you. More proof of your craziness.

  5. Susan Foddrill… you obviously missed the memo that Bernal sought and had me prosecuted in 2012(which is public record in the Bexar County courthouse transcripts), we were NOT friends buddies or pals and he actually can’t stand me, nor I him because I fought back legally, which costs them over $80k in court costs. Even so, I will stand with the council on this one. I have never even personally met either of you, yet you say you know me and filed a police report? No LEO has ever spoken with me about either of you. Keep slinging your garbage and you’ll be the next one getting sued. Just by your lack of knowledge, actions and words, you validate my statement. Y’all are crazy and you prove it by continuously filing false police and FBI reports against anyone who disagrees with your agenda. To the Texas Monitor- You’d be wise to cut your ties with the Foddrills, lest they be claiming false charges against you next.

  6. Upon reflection, I have to admit that I have been too hard on Nico Lahood. I was angry and I took my frustrations out on him. He’s not perfect, but he’s not the boogey man I have made him out to be in all my letters. My frustration with the DA is that he hasn’t agreed to throw all of the crooks in jail. But I’ve been reading more and more about his record. I have come to realize he has a good heart and that he is trying his best. I’m big enough to admit when I’m wrong and I was wrong about him. But as for Manny Pelaez, that guy owes me an apology. I will not tolerate his making a mockery of my investigation by suggesting that I have wasted my time. He brought this on himself. After he refused to appoint me to the city’s ethics review board, he made it clear that he doesn’t take my point of view seriously. I’m a polite guy, but when you insult a Foddrill you get what’s coming to you. Alex Jones is right: The illuminati and the Vatican have taken over and the war is real. My investigation shows that Pelaez is illuminati AND a Pope worshiping Catholic. WAKE UP PEOPLE. MAGA!

    • Trent Seibert…TM….I did NOT post this comment above.( April 5 , 10:31 am) Please determine who used my name, impersonated me and posted this information pretending to be me. I will use the information you provide to file criminal charges and will talk to my attorney about a lawsuit. You can see from the comments posted here that Councilman Peleaz’s attacks are nothing new. Once I post anything on-line the mal-contents come out of the woodwork with the vulgar, vile attacks….They have nothing better to do with their lives that is revealed by looking at their individual FB profiles…very disturbing….Thank you. …John E Foddrill Sr.

  7. I personally know Mrs. Foddrill. She is not a lunatic. She doesn’t need medication. She doesn’t need psychiatric care. She doesn’t need to be hospitalized.

    As the reincarnated Jesus on this planet, I can vouch for her sanity. I speak to her by way of telepathic voicemails that I deliver to her brilliant mind.

    Please stop bullying this woman. She is a genius.

    Her husband, on the other…. a complete mouth breathing moron.

  8. I generally don’t care much for city council, the foddrells are batshit crazy and have stalked many people. I personally know a few people that had to report and block them. So, with that said, foddrell probably deserved whatever this person told them.

    • My husband was forced to report Robin Canter to the police after she posted threats on social media. Canter was part of the Occupy/Anon group supported by corrupt Copuncilman Diego M Bernal who worked with them to harass us and hide corruption……

    • Susan Foddrill yeah whatever lady. Y’all been spewing this garbage for over 8 years. I personally know 3 people who filed formal complaints against you both to several entities in 2010, again in 2012 and again in 2013. Even the FBI is tired of your BS. I truly “feel” for the Council members that have to put up with your BS. But I don’t and I won’t, so Piss off! Take your false allegations on down the road. I blocked y’all before, I guess I have to do that again. Too bad these Council Members can’t.

    • Robin Canter pulled this out of the file……do not lie about any formal complaints filed as there never were any….YOU were the one making threats and we provided info to the police when YOU were arrested

    • Bwahahaha. Lady you are whacko. There’s video of my arrest. Its public! Y’all weren’t there, but the lawyer was. But since you actually know so much, tell us, what was I charged and found guilty of?

    • Susan Foddrill this isn’t a threat. It’s a response to your retarded husband spamming my page with your ridiculous b.s. just like you’re doing to this page right now. Keep digging that hole of insanity. Stop trolling and harassing people, especially people you don’t even know.

    • Joe Ballard we have files and FB accounts of middle of the night “conversations” between Councilman Bernal and Occupy/Anon members….The files show that Bernal encouraged members to harass my husband and help hide the corruption he was reporting …more to come

    • BTW, no one gaf about “occupy”, most don’t even know it was. And how shitty of a person are you to falsely accuse a MEDIC , who was helping the homeless of such things as “terrorism”? Of which you still have produced NO EVIDENCE. You then go a step further and say you “have proof” but it’s only a Facebook complaint and few screen shots of a select few out of thousands of people that came through an event that lasted nearly 90 days? You truly are daft.

    • John Foddrill Sr And yet Foddrill III stalks and criticizes Cynthia Brehm who ran against him and would’ve made an honest and transparent councilwoman who wouldn’t be rude to anybody who wanted to speak to the council. She’s running for Republican County Chairman, and he says bad things about her every time I post anything about her. When I ask what her opponent has done to investigate his issues, he says nothing at all, yet he blames Cynthia because she hasn’t done anything about it. What can she do if she can’t get elected? You would think he’d be backing her to see what she might do. If this continues, I’ll have to report him and his wife.

      • Barbara Miller….Please do NOT defame us and say we stalked Cynthia. We did nothing wrong. We can post our thoughts about who should be elected just like any other law-abiding citizen. We said before there is NO evidence of us doing anything that violates the law or any FB rules/regulations so please stop making defamatory, libelous accusations. ….John and Susan Foddrill

  9. update…sad to report that neither Pelaez nor any city official have replied to emails or letters concerning this abusive, criminal bahavior….the cover-up continues…the local libeal media refuses to cover the story to protect the guilty inside City Hall,,,,very sad

    • Unsubstantiated allegations and innuendo are just as bad as bad acts and coverups. If you’ve got evidence and proof, produce it for all to see, else just stop your constant nonsense. There are many media outlets in town including Sinclair’s Fox station. If you can’t them to carry your story, you need more evidence.

    • Paul Longoria TV stations often go with stories they are fed by various sources, they don’t always fact check or get the other side. They publish what they want.

    • Janet Huey TM had all the evidence they needed…look at the article please before saying that it is one-sided…Councilman Peleaz refused to comment and ALL city officials are ignoring the scandal hoping that we will just go away BUT we will not…..see for recordings, affidavits, depositions, court transcripts, city emails, city audits, city billing docs, etc. Here is a city email setting up a criminal scheme where $200,000 was stolen by IT manager Jose Medina and vendor Isabel Gnxaba that the city wants to keep hidden from taxpayers as any investigation will open a can of worms going back to 1982

  10. Wow, apparently some SA council members have nothing to do but embarrass SA with this school yard behavior. I don’t know the Foddrills, but could it be what they are/have been saying about corruption is hitting a nerve? Sure sounds like it.

  11. Remember…I told you that I only began posting the “magician” flyer or anything derogatory AFTER Pelaez did a 180 and started cyber-bullying my wife. I posted nothing but complimentary comments about him thanking him for investigating the corruption until a time when he started stalking and bullying my wife while telling lies about his investigation finding nothing. Great article except for this one very important detail…thanks John


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