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US TX: 5 Elsa Police Officers Resign After Failing Mandatory Drug Tests

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by RMJL, Sep 12, 2003.

  1. US TX: 5 Elsa Police Officers Resign After Failing Mandatory Drug Tests

    Newshawk: Herb
    Pubdate: Tue, 09 Sep 2003
    Source: Valley Morning Star (TX)
    Copyright: 2003 Valley Morning Star
    Author: Adriana Martinez
    Bookmark: (Drug Testing)

    ELSA -- Five Elsa police officers failed a mandatory drug test and resigned Tuesday, city officials said.

    City Manager Anabel Guerra said the five officers resigned after learning they had failed the drug tests ordered by city leaders last Tuesday.

    "The five officers who failed the drug test have already resigned," Guerra said. "And the city will not be replacing the positions at this time."

    City leaders ordered all 67 employees to take the drug test. Guerra said that only 59 had taken the mandatory drug test because some did not work for various reasons last week.

    The mandatory drug test is city policy, Guerra said.

    "It's not a big deal," Guerra said. "Mandatory drug testing is part of our policy and has been implemented since 1991.

    "The policy establishes a drug-free environment and we intend to do the testing every year. A lot of places do it, like McAllen and Edinburg. Even the school district does it."

    Elsa Police Chief Primitivo Rodriguez said the incident was unfortunate, but that in no way does his department condone the use of illicit drugs.

    "We test because we are not going to allow it to continue," Rodriguez said. "We still have a good department and its image will be something that the city of Elsa can be proud of because we are not going to tolerate this."

    The mandatory drug testing is done at random and is not performed at any particular time of the year.

    Rodriguez said that the last round of random drug tests were completed nine months ago.

    While the test rooted out five officers who may have used illegal drugs, the department will be affected because fewer officers are watching the streets, Rodriguez said.

    "Being out five officers will affect us, but we're not completely out of personnel," Rodriguez said.

    "We will still serve and protect the community 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Things have to get done."

    Guerra said the police department would have enough manpower with the 21 members -- including the police chief and dispatch officer --on the payroll.

    Guerra said that it takes 13 officers to adequately maintain the peace in Elsa.

    Luz Moya, manager of First Cash Pawn in Elsa, said he heard of the five officers failing their drug tests on his way to work and felt the Elsa Police Department would continue to run smoothly without them.

    "The force is out of five officers in one day. It's crazy," Moya said.

    "But I believe the department will still be able to offer the same amount of protection to this business and to the people as before."


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