PLEASE NOTE: Nothing in this publishing or on this website should be taken as legal advice.
Brownsville Police Disciplines 3 Officers – August 2023
Brownsville Police Chief Felix Sauceda Jr. has taken disciplinary actions against three officers between January 1, 2023, and August 25, 2023. This signifies the commitment of the Brownsville Police Department to uphold the standards of professionalism and accountability within its ranks. The actions taken by Chief Sauceda Jr. demonstrate the department’s dedication to maintaining public trust and ensuring that officers adhere to the highest standards of conduct.
Civil Service Protected
The Brownsville Police Department has officers who are protected by civil service. This means that, according to the Texas Local Government Code 143, officers can perform their duties without political influence. This protection allows them to enforce the law objectively and impartially, without being affected by external interests or pressures.
Thanks to this safeguard, Brownsville police officers can concentrate on maintaining the safety and well-being of the community they serve. Civil service provides them with job security and protection against any attempts of political interference in their duties.
Furthermore, having civil service protection allows Brownsville police officers to focus on fulfilling their responsibilities without worrying about retaliation or changes in their positions due to political shifts. This ensures greater integrity and consistency in law enforcement, as officers are not influenced by individual or partisan political agendas.
In summary, the civil service protection granted to officers of the Brownsville Police Department enables them to perform their duties independently and professionally, ensuring the safety and order in the community they serve.
Brownsville Police Officer Indefinitely Suspended
On Monday, June 26, 2023, at approximately 2:30 a.m., Officer Reynaldo Rios engaged in the act of Continuous Violence, which stands as a 3rd Degree Felony, by assaulting an unidentified individual. Furthermore, on July 10, 2023, Officer Rios committed the crimes of Burglary of a Habitation with intent to commit a felony, graded as a 1st Degree Felony, and Stalking, classified as a 3rd Degree Felony. These offenses took place when Officer Rios unlawfully entered the residence of an unnamed victim in Brownsville, Texas, without their consent. Lastly, on May 29, 2023, Officer Rios committed the offense of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, categorized as a 2nd Degree Felony, by brandishing a firearm and threatening an unnamed individual’s life.
The City of Brownsville Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Unit diligently investigated these allegations. Subsequently, in collaboration with the Cameron County District Attorney’s Office, the investigative unit concluded that there was reasonable evidence to support the commission of said crimes and obtained arrest warrants for Officer Rios. Consequently, on July 14, 2023, Officer Rios was apprehended pursuant to the arrest warrants and subsequently detained at the Brownsville City Jail.
Officer Reynaldo Rios was indefinitely suspended.
An indefinite suspension is equivalent to a job termination and is reported to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE). During an indefinite suspension, an employee is removed from their position without a specific return date. This disciplinary measure is applied when a serious offense has been committed.
In the case of TCOLE, an indefinite suspension pertains to law enforcement officers and other professionals where a license to be appointed in a particular profession is needed. When an indefinite suspension is issued, it is reported to TCOLE, which can have significant implications for the individual’s professional trajectory. The suspension is recorded in their file and can affect future employment opportunities within the realm of public safety.
It’s important to note that an indefinite suspension is not the same as a temporary suspension, where a specific duration is established and the employee is expected to return to work once that period is over. In the case of an indefinite suspension, no return date is set, creating greater uncertainty for the affected employee.
In summary, an indefinite suspension is a serious disciplinary measure applied in cases of severe work misconduct or violation of internal policies. Having an indefinite suspension in one’s employment history can have significant repercussions on a person’s career, especially in the field of public safety. Reporting this suspension to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement is part of the process to maintain an accurate record of disciplinary actions taken against law enforcement officers.
Brownsville Police Officer Suspended for Excessive Force on Three Individuals
On June 10, 2023, at approximately 01:59 AM, Officer Trujillo Jr. responded as a backup officer to a traffic stop on the 500 block of Springmart Blvd. During the incident, Officer Trujillo Jr. and Sgt. Jose Martinez 7158 encountered resistance from both the male driver and the female passenger.
When the male driver refused to comply with Sgt. Martinez’s orders to exit the vehicle, both officers proceeded to extract him from the driver’s seat. As the male continued to resist, Officer Trujillo Jr. employed a knee strike to the male subject’s head to gain control. The male was then removed from the vehicle and detained in handcuffs.
Meanwhile, the female passenger disregarded Officer Trujillo Jr.’s lawful orders to step back. In response, Officer Trujillo Jr. approached the female and initiated a takedown maneuver in an attempt to detain her. However, the female resisted and refused to comply with his orders to turn over, leading Officer Trujillo Jr. to use a closed fist, striking her in the face. Subsequently, she was also detained in handcuffs.
On July 14, 2023, Officer Trujillo Jr. responded to a Prowler Call at 805 E. Madison St. involving a female who was placed under arrest for the offense of Public Intoxication. During the process of escorting her to a patrol unit for transport, a physical altercation occurred between Officer Trujillo Jr. and the female.
Officer Trujillo Jr. encountered resistance from the female when she attempted to kick him in the groin. In response to her actions, Officer Trujillo Jr. used a defensive maneuver by wrapping his arms around her from the rear and lifting her off the ground. Unfortunately, this resulted in her falling face-first onto the street, causing her to lose consciousness and sustaining an abrasion to her facial area.
Following the incident, Officer Trujillo Jr. and his colleagues, Officer Francisco Maldonado 9422 and Officer Lilia Banuelos 9643, proceeded to place the female into the back seat of the patrol unit. It is important to note that Officer Trujillo Jr. did not request immediate medical attention for the female at that time.
Officer Tolando Trujillo Jr agreed to be suspended for two calendar days.
Brownsville Police Agent Suspended After Subsequent Vehicle Accident
On Wednesday, April 12, 2023, at approximately 3:22pm, Agent Argenis Martinez was involved in a traffic accident while driving his assigned unit, a White Nissan Sentra with Texas license plates SRD-4415. Agent Martinez was traveling East on the 3300 block of Boca Chica Boulevard when he failed to control his speed and collided with the back of a Grey Cadillac Escalade that was stopped in front of him. Both vehicles sustained significant damage as a result of the collision.
Sergeant Hugo Valdez and Officer Gilbert Gonzalez were dispatched to the scene to conduct an investigation into the accident. After completing their investigation, it was determined that Agent Martinez was at fault for the crash. Consequently, Agent Martinez was cited for failure to control speed.
It is important to note that this is not the first instance of Agent Martinez being involved in a traffic accident. He had previously received counseling for his involvement in an at-fault traffic crash on September 1, 2022.
Agent Argenis Martinez agreed to a one day suspension.
Transparency is Important
Transparency is crucial to maintain public trust and ensure accountability within any organization, including the police department. It is essential for the leadership of the Brownsville Police Department to uphold the highest standards of professionalism and demonstrate their commitment to transparency.
By providing regular updates on disciplinary actions taken against officers, Chief Felix Sauceda Jr. can ensure that the community is aware of the department’s efforts to hold its members accountable. These updates can include details about the nature of the disciplinary measures, the reasons for them, and any steps taken to prevent similar incidents in the future.
Additionally, implementing an internal review board or oversight mechanism can further enhance transparency. This independent body can oversee disciplinary actions and ensure that they are carried out impartially and without any bias. The board could consist of representatives from various stakeholders, including community members, to ensure a diverse range of perspectives.
Furthermore, the Brownsville Police Department can establish a clear and accessible process for citizens to file complaints or raise concerns about officer conduct. Ensuring that these complaints are thoroughly investigated and addressed in a timely manner will demonstrate the department’s commitment to addressing misconduct and maintaining transparency.
Overall, transparency plays a vital role in building and maintaining public trust. By proactively sharing information and implementing mechanisms for oversight, the Brownsville Police Department can foster accountability, enhance community relations, and ensure that its leadership is held to the highest standards of conduct.
A Couple of Our Other Reads
You may be interested in our publishing on the 2022 Brownsville Police Department disciplinary actions.
Or you ay find our publishing on the 2021 Brownsville Police Department disciplinary actions, of interest.
Follow Us on Social Media
YOUTUBE: The Hawk’s Eye – Consulting & News
TUMBLR: The Hawk’s Eye – Consulting & News
LINKEDIN: The Hawk’s Eye – Consulting & News
Categories: The Field Review - Local