Dallas County Sheriff Valdez Says Recruits May Have Flunked Certification Exams on Purpose

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Something weird and unsettling happened last year at the Dallas County Sheriff's Training Academy. Of 27 recruits that enrolled, a mere seven -- barely 25 percent -- passed on their first try. Weird because the wave of failures was unprecedented. The previous year, all 16 would-be deputies passed. Unsettling because as NBC 5 first reported on Friday, it put the academy in danger of being shut down by the state.

No wonder then that Dallas County Commissioners would demand answers when they met on Tuesday. Dutiful public servant that she is, Valdez gave them an answer: the recruits may have flunked their exam on purpose.

See also: Sheriff Lupe Ain't a Good Test Taker

"We can't say that it was done on purpose, we can't say that it wasn't," Valdez said.

It seems rather absurd that 17 otherwise competent potential employees would go through weeks of training only to purposely torpedo their shot at the job they'd applied for, but Valdez has an explanation for that, too. From The Dallas Morning News' recap of Tuesday's meeting:

That year, cadets learned midway through the program that there were no openings for deputies. The candidates may not have seen any point in passing, she said, or they may have been angry and failed the test on purpose.

Given the academy's typically solid pass rate, that's at least plausible, more so anyways than the alternate possibilities that Dallas County brought in a remarkably incompetent set of recruits or that the quality of training suddenly but temporarily took a nosedive.

Still, it doesn't inspire a lot of confidence in the department when one learns that those 17 recruits were ultimately hired on as deputies after passing a retest. Because if there's one person who knows how tough it can be to pass law enforcement certification exams on the first try, it's Valdez.

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

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82 comments
datsneefa
datsneefa

Maybe its because police are terrorists and no full witted person would want to be one

deep-sigh
deep-sigh

If you go through the academy, pass the test and the county doesn't have open slots, are graduates eligible for positions in other counties or does each county require it's own certification test?  

bvckvs
bvckvs topcommenter

re:  "that's at least plausible, more so anyways than the alternate possibilities that Dallas County brought in a remarkably incompetent set of recruits"

No, the more plausible answer is that the recruits were remarkably incompetent.  That's one of the problems with recruiting for the police department - a lot of crazy people and half-wits think they can get on the force.

George Zimmerman, the man who got away with murdering Trayvon Martin in Florida, is a fine example of that.  He wasn't just a gun-crazy jackass, he was a half-wit who kept trying to get on the force, and kept failing.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz

I'd really love to tell you all about the benefits of urine therapy

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

You critics should only do so well in life as Lupe:


Born to migrant farm worker parents, she was raised in San Antonio as the youngest of seven children. She started life working in the fields, but paid her way through college, earning a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Southern Nazarene University in Bethany, Oklahoma. She then earned a Master's degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Prior to entering law enforcement, Lupe Valdez was an officer in the United States Army. During her time in the Army, she attained the rank of Captain.

Her law enforcement career began as a jailer, first in a county jail and then a federal prison. She then moved on to investigative roles as an agent of the General Services Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and, finally, the U.S. Customs Service where she was a leader in the federal Counter Smuggling Initiative.

With the creation of the Department of Homeland Security in 2002, she was made a Senior Agent, serving in that role until her retirement in 2004. In January 2004, Lupe Valdez retired to run for the office of Dallas County Sheriff.---Wikipedia

DOisDUMDUM
DOisDUMDUM

Great argument against straight ticket voting.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

Wait, so the DCSO ran an academy but wasn't hiring at the time?  Seems pretty pointless

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

I have seen nothing over the years to show me any real professionalism or integrity in DCSO.

jail abuse.

ticket scandals.

scary to think what kind of person WANTS to get that job.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

Valdez has always struck me as a bad example of an affirmative-action hire. Maybe I've missed some things, some great accomplishments during her tenure, and maybe she was a step up from her predecessor, but I haven't seen it.

pak152
pak152

@deep-sigh which leads me to ask how many of these academies exist in the state?

pak152
pak152

@bvckvs ah someone who ignores the evidence of the case

dfw_maverick
dfw_maverick

@bvckvs my bad, I misread your post - on first reading I thought you were saying he was on the "force"

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

Terrific, worked for the government all her life, but has she been a good a Dallas Sheriff? Does her explanation for the failures make sense?

You can find lots of government functionaries that have worked through school, etc, but really aren't very good at their jobs.

lebowski300
lebowski300

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz  More importantly, are her copy and paste skills up to snuff?

ozonelarryb
ozonelarryb

It certainly wasn't straight ticket voting that goet her in....

It was just 'tired of the old boss.'

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@ScottsMerkin

It's kind of like taking a civil service exam, or getting a CDL license.

However, it does seem odd that the recruits were told there were no openings "midway", suggesting that the sheriffs dept fucked up in not disclosing that fact from the git-go. I'm pretty certain many hopefuls would take the test regardless, in the logical expectation that when the inevitable openings occur, they'd be ready to go.

Over the years, this Sherrif seems to have a habit of CYA excuses.

What
What

@TheRuddSki Because you don't live here.  If you want to see Loopy just tell your nurse to bring a mirror. 

bvckvs
bvckvs topcommenter

@pak152 @bvckvs 

Yeah, I get it - by your values, killing a black man isn't "murder".

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@TheRuddSki  So, you're willing to condemn her because of some vague innuendo, without knowing anything about her lifelong service to our nation?

DOisDUMDUM
DOisDUMDUM

@ozonelarryb  You are 100% wrong. Dallas county voted 60% straight party Democrat in 08. That accounts for 75% of Valdez' votes. Even with all that help she only won by 65k votes.


So no, it was definitely not "tired of the old boss"


TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@What

I didn't call her loopy, but if you want to, fine with me. You seem a little short and irritable today, not your usual man-of-many-pointless-words routine. Did the waitresses short you on tips or something? Maybe your busing is as as bad as your writing?

doublecheese
doublecheese

@jmckee3 @TheRuddSki  That's true.  I think Rudd's on the right path here though.  Her selection seems to have had little to do with her competence for the job.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@jmckee3

Your right, I should remember that, as I lived there when she was elected. My mistake, I sit corrected.

But, then again, I consider Obama an "affirmative-action hire".

bvckvs
bvckvs topcommenter

@pak152 @bvckvs  Yeah, I get it.  By your values, chasing down an innocent black man and shooting him dead is "self defense".

pak152
pak152

@bvckvs
not when done in self-defense. your problem is you're ignoring the evidence. has nothing to do with whether or not the dead individual is white, black, polkadot or whatever


Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Scotty, don't be daft.  That's celebratedivershitty.  Just play along.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

I'm not condemning anyone, I'm just commenting that

A. Her excuse for this incident seems dumb

B. From what I've read over the years, I get the impression she's gotten some bad reviews concerning her job performance.

C. Many degreed and hard-working wonderful lovely salt-of-the-Earth veterans of impeccable spirit who work in government are not good at their jobs, she may be one.

DOisDUMDUM
DOisDUMDUM

Her challenger's straight party votes accounted for 58%. 


If you take away the party votes?


Cannaday: 135,191

Valdez: 99,368


She would have lost big time without straight party voting/Obama. 

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@What

No, what, Who's the Sheriff in Florida.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

Looking at the photo, I was thinking "sue-eeee".

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

.... when I was Mrs.Katz over at CNN for years...

Oh, so you're their viewer. The mystery is finally solved!

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@What

This article is about the Dallas Sheriff, no-one at this blog cares about the Salina, Kansas sheriff.

What
What

@DOisDUMDUM How can you remember those numbers old man and can't remember where the potty is located? 

What
What

@DOisDUMDUM Now that can't be Dumbo.  Obama is a Democrat and the way our government works is majority rules.  And old DumbDumb's take nappy naps.  Dallas is a city.  Quinlan is a town. 

What
What

@TheRuddSki Because you don't live here Loopy Sue Monger.  It doesn't really concern you.  Tell us about the Sheriff in Baton Rouge or Des Moines or I know your own freaking city.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@ScottsMerkin  Meh!  Scotty, when I was Mrs.Katz over at CNN for years this same twit did the same shtick to me.  That one is an old nemesis of mine.  


Oh, and BTW, I know exactly who it is.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz well you know you hit it big when someone makes a fake account about you!  (says the guy who runs a fake twitter account lol)

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

Not to press you too hard, hon, but you've never disproved a fact I've presented, you simply change the subject. I make note of it when you evade, short memory?

DOisDUMDUM
DOisDUMDUM

@ryan762 @DOisDUMDUM @TheRuddSki  


2004:  VOTES PERCENT VOTES PERCENT


Straight Party Vote for 1 01 = Republican Party (REP) 215,618 48.32  


02 = Democratic Party (DEM) 228,549 51.22  

Vote for 1 


 01 = Danny Chandler (REP) 320,172 48.65 


02 = Lupe Valdez (DEM) 337,999 51.35


Chandler: 104,554

Valdez: 109,450


She barely squeeked by in 04 and would have lost every election since. 

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@ryan762  Exactly.  You see, DUMDUM graduated from the University of Ruddski School of Fact-finding.

ryan762
ryan762

@DOisDUMDUM @TheRuddSkiShe was elected the first time in 2004, when George W. Bush was running for (and winning) re-election in a county that voted for George W. Bush over John Kerry by 10,000 votes or so.

lftay
lftay

@Tim.Covington @doublecheese @jmckee3 @TheRuddSki  If you look at her resume, it appears that she jumped around a lot during her time in the government.  Given that most civil servants can't be fired short of a serious criminal conviction, that's usually a sign that others found you incompetent and wanted you gone.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

Real life, Myrna, real life.

Besides, she's not in Angel Eyes, that stars Ku Hye-sun, Lee Sang-yoon, Kim Ji-seok and Seungri.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

Actually, I think there's no surprise on the part of the public, indeed almost an expectation, that many lady cops are lesbian.

DOisDUMDUM
DOisDUMDUM

@TheRuddSki  She was elected because she was on a ticket with Obama in a town that voted for Obama. 

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@TheRuddSki  It wasn't an issue the first time she was elected because, like you, I doubt many people knew.  By the time she ran again, the attitudes toward gay people changed so much and so quickly that the voters couldn't care less that she was a Lesbian.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@Myrna

That's possible Myrna, but it doesn't answer my question.

I wasn't aware she was gay until well after the election, actually.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@jmckee3

Anything is possible. Dallas is a blue town, right? Democrats tend to be into identity politics every once in a great while.

I don't recall, but was there any broad opposition to her candidacy because she was, as you put it, a "Hispanic butch lesbian"?

doublecheese
doublecheese

@jmckee3 @doublecheese @TheRuddSki  She is clearly not competent.  She was obviously elected.  This can only mean she was not elected on her competence.  I will grant that it may say more about the lack of competence in her opponent than hers.  That's a common dilemma in elections. 

jmckee3
jmckee3

@doublecheese @TheRuddSki  Because Hispanic butch lesbians are well known to receive broad public support despite being unqualified due to liberal guilt?

Tim.Covington
Tim.Covington

@doublecheese @jmckee3 @TheRuddSki  She seemed like a good pick at the time (at least better than her opponent). She had a pretty good career in federal law enforcement to before running. I'm not sure what this says about federal law enforcement.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@TheRuddSki   Stop whining and just go ahead and sue Obama for causing every bad thing in the universe to happen since January, 2009.  

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