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 Investigation Finds Police Chief Violated Texas Law

San Antonio, TX – Today, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit against the City of San Antonio, Police Chief William McManus, and City Manager Sheryl Sculley, for their failure to comply with Senate Bill 4, which prohibits sanctuary cities. The lawsuit is the result of a lengthy investigation into the Chief’s actions on December 23, 2017, when police were called to the scene of an apparent human smuggling operation. A dozen suspected illegal aliens were found in the back of a tractor-trailer and when Chief McManus appeared on scene, he refused to cooperate with federal immigration authorities and subsequently ordered the 12 suspected illegal aliens released from custody, in violation of Senate Bill 4.

“The decision by the AG to sue Chief McManus and City Manager Sculley totally vindicates the position our organization took earlier this year when we called out the Chief for his brazen disregard of Texas law,” said Mike Helle, President of the San Antonio Police Officers’ Association. “We said at the time, that the Chief’s action’s violated state law and that he may have very well put lives in danger by releasing unknown illegal aliens into our city.”

The Attorney General began an investigation into the Chief’s action after SAPOA leaders approached the Lt. Governor and the Attorney General on January 10, 2018. After announcing his decision to investigate, the Attorney General delivered a letter to the City Council ordering that they preserve all records and documents regarding the December 23rd incident. Since that time, Sheryl Sculley and almost every member of the San Antonio City Council has voiced their support for the Chief’s actions, making them complicit in the Chief’s violation of state law.

In light of this lawsuit, which names Chief McManus as the first defendant, and which asks the court to issue an injunction requiring the City to comply with SB 4, prohibit SAPD from thwarting federal immigration enforcement, and assess civil penalties against the City, SAPD, and Chief McManus, the San Antonio Police Officers’ Association does hereby call on the Mayor and City Council to:

  1. Place Chief William McManus on Administrative Leave.
  2. Appoint an Interim Chief of Police.
  3. Investigate whether or not the Chief lied to City Council Members regarding his actions on December 23, 2017.

Form more information on the lawsuit and background on the incident, go to: SvM Original Petition_FINAL.pdf

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