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  • Sheriff Santiago "Jimmy" Apodaca
  • VIDEO: Sheriff Jimmy Apodaca's Final Interview
  • Santiago "Jimmy" Apodaca was appointed Sheriff of El Paso County Tuesday, January 15, 2008. In July 1995, Jimmy Apodaca was appointed Chief Deputy by Sheriff Leo Samaniego. He succeeded Sheriff Leo Samaniego who passed away December 28, 2007. Just before his death, Leo Samaniego prepared a statement which was made public hours after his passing. The letter read;
  • I have not given up the fight to beat this disease. If I die from this disease, I am expressing my sincere wish to the El Paso County Commissioner's Court to appoint Jimmy Apodaca as Sheriff of El Paso County to finish the remainder of my term that expires on December 31, 2008. It is still my dream to turn over a key to the next Sheriff of a fully accredited Sheriff's office, to include the training academy and dispatch offices. We will be the only Sheriff's office in the State of Texas to have more than four accreditations.
  • Sincerely,
  • Leo Samaniego, Sheriff
  • El Paso County Sheriff's Office
  • Jimmy Apodaca retired on December 31, 2008 after 43 years in Law Enforcement. In his last official day in office, he wrote a farewell letter to Sheriff's Office employees which read;
  • I was humbled by a chance of a lifetime when my mentor Sheriff Leo Samaniego appointed me Commander of the Sheriff's Office Metro Narcotics Task Force in 1988. The appointment started a 20 year opportunity to work with the best law enforcement leader in the country and the most dedicated law enforcement professionals in Texas.
  • In the summer of 1995 as this agency grew to one of the most proficient in the region, I took on a new role as Chief Deputy. In this position I worked directly with Sheriff Samaniego fulfilling his dream of developing an internationally recognized Sheriff's Office. It was a partnership and the awards that brought this agency national recognition is a reflection of the hard work by every man and woman of the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.
  • Every year this agency grew in stature as recruits graduated from the Basic Detention Officers Academy and the Peace Officers Academy. A culture of ethics, honesty, and integrity were common place and now serve as the cornerstone of an era of law enforcement that we can all be proud of.
  • I know that when our leader passed away on December 28, 2007 it was an immeasurable loss. That emotional day was marked by professionalism by all of you and in the process of moving forward Sheriff Samaniego's final wish was honored. I'm grateful for being allowed to complete his term.
  • Graduations, promotions, award ceremonies and retirements are the norm in this line of work. As I exit into retirement as Sheriff of El Paso County I'm honored to have been a part of the rich tradition of the states first accredited Sheriff's Office.
  • I thank all of you for laboring tirelessly to make this agency stand head shoulders above all of the others. All of the awards we have won pale in comparison to your everyday efforts. The reward I take with me is fond memories and knowing that all of you hold true to our belief as a team "to do the right thing, because it is the right thing to do." I'll close this chapter of this 156 year old book knowing that those of you staying behind will continue to do the right thing, because it is the right thing to do.
  • Be safe and God Bless all of you,
  • Sheriff Jimmy Apodaca
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