Weslaco police chief under fire for conduct during bank robbery
Wed, 05 Oct 2011 03:54:00 GMT —
Juan Sifuentes has been Weslaco's police chief for about a year but he's already coming under fire for alleged neglect of duty and unsatisfactory performance.
At the very least he is required to keep these individuals within his sight at a safe distance and report what he saw to dispatchers and request assistance, said Roberto Garcia That didn't happen.
Roberto Garcia, the Regional Attorney with the Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas (CLEAT), sent a five-page letter to Weslaco City Commissioners describing how Sifuentes failed to follow procedure during an armed robbery he witnessed last month.
On September 16th, two armed suspects robbed the La Joya Area Federal Credit Union and supposedly Chief Sifuentes was in the parking lot, watched the suspects drive off, without following them.
CLEAT wants the chief to be removed from his duties while an internal investigation is launched
"We are requesting that the city conduct it's own investigation into these allegations and find out if there's any truth to them and if so to take the appropriate actions, said Garcia.
City Manager Leo Olivares received the union's letter last Friday.
He says he needs to gather more information before deciding what action to take.
"Right now we are in the process of doing a preliminary investigation into the matter, said Olivares. We TMre trying to assess the facts. If we find sufficient concern we will look at options including conducting an internal affairs investigation or bringing in a third party.
Part of that investigation includes listening to audio communications between the chief, officers and dispatch
But Olivares says he's never had any complaints on Sifuentes in the past.
Chief Sifuentes, who took over the position in February, did not answer or return our calls for comment.
It's also unclear whether he was on duty at the time of the incident or if he was inside a police vehicle.RAW VIDEO: WESLACO BANK ROBBERY