One East Texas town has a new leader in law enforcement, again. Tuesday night, Hallsville swore in a new police chief, its third in just under seven months.
Paul Montoya was originally hired as a patrolman in January, after the entire department was fired. But, Mayor Medrona says Montoya is more than qualified for the position. He's been in law enforcement for nearly eight years, seven as an officer in Longview.
"This town is growing and they (residents) expect services like a larger city has and we have his experience with a larger city," said Mayor Medrano. "I feel like we're really making a step forward to bringing this city up."
Montoya says he also has high standards as the new chief.
"We want to have effective, efficient, pro-active officers who do community policing also," said Chief Montoya. "Service is an honor and a privilege and not a right. So, it's an honor for us to serve the citizens of Hallsville. They've entrusted us with this authority."
The original staff that was let go in December was re-instated a month after later, but Mayor Medrona says they all have since resigned.The department currently has two positions open. They're looking to hire a sergeant and patrol officer.