A Texas sheriff is being blasted as a “bad leader” after his jail mistakenly set free 12 inmates this year — including three just this month.
Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff said the local jail is facing a “crisis situation” after two convicts were wrongly set free over a 12-hour period Thursday — and called on Sheriff Javier Salazar to get his act together, the San Antonio Express-News reported.
“He tells me he’s doing everything he can and I believe he’s trying but this many incidents over the last several months is unheard of,” Wolff said.
“We’ve been exasperated about this for some time now and the Sheriff is in charge of the jail but it’s getting to the point now where some drastic changes need to be made,” he added.
The judge suggested that Salazar hire a professional jail administrator to curb the mistakes. The sheriff said he would consider it.
“I hope he does more than just consider it,” Wolff said.
At a press conference Friday, Salazar said that though an investigation was conducted after each mistaken release — he still hasn’t found the root cause, KENS5 reported.
“While I know I have to move with some purpose in these investigations, I can’t rush them either,” Salazar said. “I’ve got to make sure we’re going by the numbers and we’re looking at every possible angle.”
Salazar said he wasn’t ready to start “pointing fingers” but that he hadn’t ruled out that some of the inmates were set free intentionally.
The Sheriff’s Office said Sunday it’s overhauling its booking process and placing a captain on each shift. Officials said they will also have chiefs monitoring the process throughout the day.
Meanwhile, two candidates with law-enforcement experience, Jose Trevino and Willie Ng, are now looking to oust the sheriff over the erroneous releases.
“This is not a personal attack on Javier. I’m not saying he’s a bad person. I’m saying he’s a bad leader. I’m saying he’s a bad administrator,” Ng said.
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