4 Exclusive - 'Demotion' Likely for San Benito's Asst Chief
Fri, 27 Aug 2010 03:52:17 GMT —
San Benito's Assistant Police Chief, Arnold Garcia, may not be facing any further disciplinary action for once failing to complete a random urine drug test, but his troubles are far from over. Garcia's 3-day suspension without pay back in June for violating city policy stands as his only punishment, according to trusted sources who cited Civil Service regulations. The assistant chief tested negative for drugs on a rescreening that followed. The case against would likely have been closed if only he stayed out of trouble while on administrative leave. That was not the case, according to sources who spoke to Action 4 News under condition of anonymity. They said Garcia was caught on camera during a beer run at a Stripes convenience store in San Benito near Business 77 and Sam Houston Boulevard while using his brother's unmarked police unit. San Benito Police Lt. Antonio Garcia was also reportedly with him at the time. Both were off duty. Trusted sources also said this was the reason for the near two-month delay, with bringing Garcia back to work since the drug testing scandal. A risk assessment team for the city investigated the Garcia brothers for three alleged city policy violations:1) The purchase made with a police unit2) Transporting alcohol to another city owned location 3) Misuse of an official vehicle since neither one was on duty at the time of the alcohol purchase, according to sources. We shared the beer-buying bombshell with people in the San Benito community. "Doing something like that in a company vehicle... it's wrong.... they shouldn't be doing something like that... like I said... they got a badge they think they can do whatever they want," Juan Guzman said. "Why even try it," Ram Garza asked. "It's stupid... it's just plain stupid really." "It's really not putting a good role model for people you know... I don't know... it's sad," Sarah Whitt said. Now the man, once set to go back to work, faces a possible demotion from assistant chief to captain and along with it, a 5-thousand dollar pay cut. His brother in the narcotics division faces unpaid time off. The city's designated attorney spokesperson, Jan Cassidy, did not return calls from Action 4 News once again for comment. Meanwhile, a 3rd unnamed officer, who reportedly tipped off the Garcia brothers about the beer buying investigation, faces anything from suspension to termination, according to sources. Chief George Gomez is expected to sign off on the exact final punishments as early as tomorrow. Civil Service regulations dictate the chief must make the decision because he is the department TMs disciplinarian.As for Assistant Chief Garcia, we're told he plans to fight for back pay over the 3 days wages he lost in the drug testing scandal.