James Valenzuela named interim police chief


Fort Stockton City Manager Frank Rodriguez today announced that Sgt. James S. Valenzuela has been named interim police chief effective today.

The announcement was made via a press released issued at 4:30 p.m. today.

The city has been without a police chief since June 19 when Rodriguez terminated the employment of former chief Ryan Skelton. Skelton took over as police chief on Dec. 5, 2017.

In the interim, the department has been overseen by the two ranking officers in the police department: Lt. Maribel Perkins and Lt. Chris Orona.

Rodriguez confirmed in July that the vacant police chief position was posted on the Texas Muncipal League web site on July 12.

According to the press release that was signed by Rodriguez:

"It is my pleasure to announce the appointment of James S. Valenzuela as interim Chief of Police for the Fort Stockton Police Department effective August 2, 2019.

"James has worked for the Fort Stockton Police Department since January 2009. James S. Valenzuela is a native of Fort Stockton where he graduated from Fort Stockton High School in 1984. He attended Sul Ross State University and earned his bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice in 1998. James started his career in Criminal Justice by working at the Lewis E. “Butch” Amonette Detention Facility from 1998 to 2007 where he was a Probation Officer and later promoted to Facility Supervisor.

"James started his career with the Fort Stockton Police Department as a dispatcher in January 2009 while attending the police academy at Sul Ross State University. Once James graduated, he became a patrol officer. He was later transferred to the Criminal Investigations Division (CID) as an investigator. After his time in CID, he promoted to patrol sergeant and later to patrol lieutenant.

"James holds a Master Peace Officer License and is an instructor at the Midland College WRITC Law Enforcement Academy where he also serves on the Law Enforcement Academy Advisory Board."