Sheriff quits amid police record tampering case

Updated: 12/16/2013 12:37 PM | Created: 12/16/2013 11:22 AM
By: Elizabeth Reed,

A Mora County sheriff charged with with tampering with public records and criminal solicitation in a burglary case has resigned.

Thomas Garza stepped down last week as part of a plea agreement. Earlier this year, Garza was accused of telling deputies to lie on a police report. He allegedly told the deputies it was to protect the suspect who told him where to find the stolen guns.

The plea deal will allow Garza to avoid jail time.

Last year, Garza was accused of telling a deputy to let a DWI suspect go. The confrontation was caught on camera:

Sheriff: "I can do what I want, no one can tell me what to do."
Deputy: "Since when?"
Sheriff: "If I want to release him, I'll release him."
Deputy: "No. You can't do that. No. You can't. It is his second DWI."
Sheriff: "Release him."

Garza was suspended for 4 months after that incident.

Photo: Mora County

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