Dallas Police Chief Eddie García will be certified on first day on the job
Incoming Dallas Police Chief Eddie García is a quick study.
García shared on social media that he completed his state certification requirements as a peace officer in Texas on Thursday night – almost a week before he started work.
It is an achievement that out-of-state bosses have not achieved in recent departmental history.
García, who will be the city’s first police chief in Latino, passed the license exam with flying colors and got a 91 according to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement, which oversees the state certification process for peace officials. A 70 or higher is required to pass.
His first day will be on Wednesday.
In his 29 years in the department, Sgt.George Aranda, president of the Greater Dallas chapter of the National Latino Law Enforcement Organization, said he did not recall ever seeing an underdog chief certified on day one in Texas.
“It’s great news for us,” said Aranda. “He is ready.”
The Dallas Police Department has historically had in-house chiefs who had to take the state exam and undergo the certification process at the police academy.
García, who is from San Jose, Calif., Said he spent weeks preparing for the certification process and studying about six hours a day.
The certification marks his right to wear his uniform with four brass stars, a symbol of the best police officer – something García wanted to achieve. He’ll be able to make arrests in Texas too.
“I know it’s optics. But optics are important, ”García told The News earlier this month as he prepared for the exam. “It’s incredibly important for me to wear uniform. … If you were to ask me: “What are my three most important things?” It’s up there. “
It took former chiefs several months to wear uniform. The commission stipulates that a civilian is the principal administrator for one year.
Former police chief William Rathburn moved from Los Angeles to Dallas in 1991 to serve as the best police officer there. However, according to The News archives, it took him nine months to become a certified peace officer in Texas.
When Garcia’s predecessor, Chief U. Reneé Hall, started in 2017, it took her approximately five months to get certified. She left in December.
It is unclear when García could be outfitted for his uniform or whether a swearing-in ceremony would take place on his first day in view of the pandemic.
Police Spokesman Sgt. Warren Mitchell said Friday: “There is still a lot of administrative work to be done before Chief García begins his first day on February 3, 2021.”
Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson replied on Twitter after García passed his state exam: “Somebody got this man out for an @DallasPD uniform ASAP.”
Alyssa Fernandez contributed to this report.