What's next after Lupe Treviño's immediate resignation as Hidalgo County Sheriff

What's next after Lupe Treviño's immediate resignation as Hidalgo County Sheriff
Friday, March 28, 2014 - 5:19pm

Earlier today, we reported that Lupe Treviño is retiring as Hidalgo County Sheriff--in his original letter to Judge Ramon Garcia, Treviño states he is retiring.

However, a new letter was released by Judge Garcia stating that he is *resigning* instead of retiring.

That's the only word that changes between the two letters sent to the judge.

Both letters mention December 12, 2012 as the date when "internal and external pressures" were placed upon Sheriff Treviño.

That date of course is when his son, Jonathan Treviño, a former Mission police officer and member of the Panama Unit drug task force, was arrested by federal agents on corruption charges. 

The Panama Unit was an anti-narcotics squad tied directly to the sheriff's office.

In addition to the sheriff's son, other former members of the sheriff's department were also linked to this corruption case.  Last year, Jonathan Treviño and other members of the Panama Unit pleaded guilty to corruption charges.

Treviño's resignation does not come with any investigation, but now the county is following the Texas election codes in determining the sheriff's successor.

"On Wednesday, April 2, 2014, we will be appointing an interim sheriff by majority vote of the county commissioners court," explained Judge Ramon Garcia.  "Whoever gets three or more votes out of the five votes in county commissioners court will be our new [interim] sheriff."

The new interim sheriff will serve from April 2nd until the general election in November.  Until the interim sheriff is selected, four supervisors will make decisions over their respective divisions.

Those four supervisors include commanders John Montemayor, Daniel Garcia, Gerardo Lopez, and Gabriel Castañeda.

Since the primary election is over, voters will not be able to select who is on the final ballot.

"It's unfortunate that our primary has come and passed, quite normally we'd love the general public and our voters to decide who would be on ballots," said Joseph Palacios, county commissioner precinct 4.  "In this fact, we're obviously diverting to election code."

"Under the election code it says that Democrats and Republicans get together, and by majority rule select their nominee," Judge Garcia added.

The election code also allows individuals not selected as the Democratic or Republican nominees to run as independent or write-in candidates.

Judge Garcia predicts voters in Hidalgo County will elect another democratic candidate as Treviño's successor.

The newly elected sheriff will serve the remainder of Treviño's term, which runs out on December 31, 2016.

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