New Chief, Same as the Old Chief

The City of El Paso has appointed an EPPD veteran as acting Police Chief.

From the El Paso Times:

City officials appointed Peter Pacillas, an assistant police chief, as the interim El Paso police chief.

Pacillas has been serving as assistant police chief since 2009, and he graduated from the El Paso Police Academy in 1988.

. . .

“I’m confident Chief Pacillas will demonstrate thoughtful and effective decision-making as well as strong leadership in action. These traits have worked well for him in the past and they will guide him as he leads the uniformed and civilian men and women of our police force,” [El Paso City Manager Tommy] Gonzalez said.

Less than a week into his tenure, Interim Chief Pacillas is already facing a challenge.


The City of El Paso says it will not release the police body camera footage showing a controversial incident outside a house party in far El Paso.

The incident occurred at the 3100 block of Blue Dirt in far east El Paso on Saturday, February 4th.

CBS4 got an arrest report for Elijah Corral, the young man seen in the viral video, who was detained and then tased by police after he appeared to be already pinned to the ground.

. . .

CBS4 filed an open record request with the city of El Paso through the Texas Public Information Act requesting the body cam.

CBS4’s request was denied.

The city attorney’s office cited Texas law saying:

We have made a good faith determination the information you requested deals with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime and the release of the remaining records would interfere with the detection, investigation, or of an open case. This information is subject to Section 552.108(a)(1) of the Texas Government Code.

Corral’s father said he’s trying to get a hold of the body cam footage himself and filed an open records request, as well.

“But they did mention that if and when we get it, it might be redacted. So I’m thinking, I mean why would you want to redact it, why would you want to cover up certain instances?” he asked.

You might remember that the El Paso Police Department is taser happy, leading to the death of more than a couple of El Pasoans having mental health crises.

At least we know that there’s body cam footage. The popo didn’t use to have bady cams. Various news sources say that “El Paso’s Finest” just got almost 800 body cams a few days ago. And Corral’s arrest report states that “body cam footage and photographs were uploaded,” according to the story on CBS4Local.

Kind of makes you wonder why they got body cams if they’re not going to let us see what they recorded.

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