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TxDOT Visits Sheriff’s Office Following EPPD Quota Allegations

El Paso Sheriff Richard Wiles says on the heels of allegations of overtime fraud in the El Paso police department, a state agency dropped in on him to check his records.

During a news conference Thursday morning, Wiles said representatives from the Texas Department of Transportation visited the El Paso County Sheriff’s office last week.

ABC-7 has reported that five former El Paso police officers have accused the city of forcing ticket quotas on them in order to help keep TxDOT grant money.

The parties have requested an injunction asking that the city “cease, desist and refrain from enforcing any and all grants and systems that require the issuance of citations and arrests.”

Sheriff Wiles said his office also receives overtime funding from the department of transportation.

He said during their site visit, TxDOT officials informed his office that it fell short when it came to the number of tickets issued by deputies.

But Wiles maintained that does not mean quotas, which he said are outlawed in Texas, are ever part of his equation.

“It’s very clear that (the number of tickets issued is) not a requirement,” Wiles said. “It’s just an objective.”

ABC-7 has also reported on discrepancies in TxDOT grant paperwork uncovered as part of the police case.

A grant document provided to KVIA by TxDOT contained a line reading in part, “Nothing in this agreement shall be interpreted as a requirement, formal or informal, that a peace officer issue a predetermined number of citations.”

A similar document, entered as part of the court filing by attorneys representing the five officers, did not contain the line.

When asked about it during Thursday’s news conference, Wiles told ABC-7 that his TxDOT grant paperwork does include the language. The sheriff read the line aloud.

Wiles added that he has never seen any documents regarding that TxDOT grant that did not include the wording.

ABC-7 has tried to get a hold of the officers’ attorneys, Theresa Caballero and Stuart Leeds, to ask about the document differences.

On Tuesday, KVIA reporter Matt Smith received a text message from a cellphone number listed to Leeds that read, “It is the job of Channel 7 to carry forth the government’s falsehoods.”

ABC-7 made repeated attempts to contact Caballero and Leeds again Wednesday for their comment, but they did not return calls to address the issue.

Link:Document entered as part of the Petition for Injunction

Link:Document provided by TxDOT

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