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One year after its creation, Starr County Special Crimes Unit takes on high-profile cases

CBS 4 News Reporter Jolanie Martinez takes a look at Starr County's Special Crime Unit, nearly a year after its inception.

In the year since it's been created, the Starr County Special Crimes Unit has made tremendous changes in the streets of the county, said Rio Grande City Police Chief Noe Castillo.

"The unit has over $113,000 in seizures from eight-liners,” said Castillo. “They had over 15,000 in warrants that they had to execute with drug search warrants and over 116 arrests."

With Starr being a small county, Castillo said resources can be limited, so the unit —which is comprised of agencies across the county— will assist in certain cases.

Although the unit originally focused on street-level crimes, it have evolved to investigating high-profile cases, including public corruption and bribery.

"We have been able to show the community and elected officials that we can conduct these sensitive and high-profile cases without bias and full objectivity,” said Robert Caples, Commander of Starr County’s Special Crimes Unit. “And that includes some of the election fraud cases that have come up recently and so we expect to be doing more of that, as well."

However, there’s no slowing down for the task force as they plan to continue to keep the public safe from harm.

"I would want to say to anybody that wants to continue to sell drugs or commit any other crime in Starr County,” said Caples. “Is that they need to be aware that we are here and that once we target them, we're going to take them out."

The Special Crimes Unit is working to expand their force and is expected to add an emergency response team.

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