"To Protect and Serve the People of our South Texas Communities"
La Salle County
Sheriff's Office
Sheriff Miguel A. Rodriguez
Elected terms
2013-17, 2017-21
La Salle County Courthouse, 101 Courthouse Square, Cotulla, Texas 78014; (830) 879-3044
IN CASE OF EMERGENCY, CALL 9-1-1

Community activities,
upcoming events, notices

What's happening?

Highway construction

The IH-35 east-side access road between Cotulla and Gardendale will be closed for six months until April 2018 for construction of a new intersection leading to the Cotulla Truck Bypass Loop, which is presently being built between the interstate at milemarker 70 and Hwy 97 on the east side of Cotulla. 
Traffic will be diverted to the west-side access road for the duration of the project and may cross under the interstate at Exit 69 (North Main Street / Business IH-35) and at Exits 73 (North) and 74 (South) in Gardendale. 

Road closures

Information on flood-related closures across the region is available from the Texas Department of Transportation at 1-800-452-9292 or http://www.drivetexas.org/

For road conditions and traffic updates within the eight-county Laredo District, follow the TxDOT Laredo District at http://twitter.com/txdotlaredo

The TxDOT Laredo District serves Dimmit, Duval, Kinney, La Salle, Maverick, Val Verde, Webb & Zavala counties.
As of September 1, it is unlawful to send or read text messages on a mobile device while operating a motor vehicle. Drivers in Texas who send text messages or are seen to be using mobile devices (apart from GPS) while traveling will be subject to citation. Violators may be fined, and fines will increase up to $200 for repeat offenses. The La Salle County Sheriff's Office will pursue prosecution of drivers who send or read text messages. Cellphone bans remain in effect in school zones and are punishable by fines of up to $200 in municipal court. Those who fail to meet court obligations or who fail to appear in court when ordered will be subject to arrest at home, at work or in the course of a traffic stop.

Texting and driving law

Swimming
pool open

The La Salle County Swimming Pool at Martinez Park, 916 Huddleston Street in Cotulla, is open to the public from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 to 8 p.m. Mondays through Fridays; and from noon to 8 p.m. Saturdays. For information, call (830) 483-5362.

Recent activities...

Public functions, community events and 
special projects involving the Sheriff's Office

October 18, 2017

Letter to the community...

Halloween trick-or-treat hours

The La Salle County Sheriff’s Office will limit certain traffic enforcement in Cotulla between the hours of 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Tuesday, October 31, and will not issue citations to drivers who have children riding in the back of trucks or on trailers for Halloween trick-or-treat outings, and who are in compliance with all other laws.

Deputies will, however, issue citations for any violations of traffic laws that are deemed reckless and dangerous to any child walking along the roadway while trick-or-treating.

I encourage all parents and guardians to exercise extreme caution while the children are out, and I ask that drivers follow all traffic laws. During the trick-or-treat hours, I ask that everyone drive well below the posted speed limits throughout Cotulla.

After 7 p.m., deputies will begin citing drivers for all offenses, including traveling with unrestrained children and minors riding in the open bed of pickup trucks or on trailers.

We urge all residents to be cautious and safe for the sake of our children.

On the same evening, the Cotulla Main Street Program will host its ‘Nightmare on Front Street’ festival of Halloween activities for all ages from 6 to 9 p.m., and will include a costume contest, ‘trunk-or-treat’ booths, food, refreshments and games.

Sincerely,
Miguel Rodriguez
La Salle County Sheriff  
  

October 17, 2017

For all
who served

La Salle County Veterans Service Officer and Sheriff's Office Sgt. Rickey Galvan and La Salle Fire Rescue & EMS Chief Daniel Mendez (center) were among those meeting with representatives of the US Veterans Administration at the Mobile Vet Center in downtown Cotulla on Tuesday, Oct. 17. Present to offer vital information and application assistance for resources and veterans' benefits were (left) readjustment counselor Tolbert Garcia and outreach specialists Jesus Perez Gloria and (far right) Enrique Reyes. Services, referrals and benefits assistance through the VA are available to all those who served in uniform; during this month's visit the counselors were also able to provide valuable benefits and pension fund application information to the widow of a member of the US armed forces. 

October 12, 2017

A token of gratitude

La Salle County Sheriff Miguel Rodriguez and Chief Deputy Earl Heath receive an art print of the Houston skyline from the Houston Division Office of the US Drug Enforcement Administration as a gift in thanks for the agency’s support through supplies and manpower in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, which made landfall on the Gulf Coast on August 26 as a Category 4 storm. In a letter accompanying the gift, DEA Special Agent in Charge Will Glaspy noted that he and the many law enforcement officers working to maintain law and order and serve the citizens in the affected region appreciate the support of fellow agencies at a time of extraordinary need. 
(For full story, see 'FEATURES')

September 26, 2017

All adrift

An 18-wheel tanker truck lies stranded on the IH-35 access road at Millett after its driver failed to note the depth of rising floodwaters and steered into current that was flowing out of low-lying fields towards Mustang Creek. The accident was the next in a string of emergencies brought on by heavy rains and flash flooding across La Salle County early Tuesday, September 26, resulting in the need for multiple rescues. In one incident, as many as 65 oilfield workers were carried to safety from their flooded jobsite.
(For related story and photos, see 'NEWS')

September 25, 2017

Dueling
dozers

A pair of front-end loaders make short work Monday, September 25, of a wooden building at the corner of Tilden and Stewart streets in downtown Cotulla, where La Salle County will shortly build its new annex, a filing and storage warehouse whose design is being approved by county commissioners. The demolition work was undertaken by a Streets Department crew from the city of Cotulla, under the supervision of Robbie Thomas, through a cooperative agreement between the city and the county. In related work, the crew has made progress in the clean-up of the city's residential neighborhoods in recent years, demolishing several abandoned or dilapidated properties that have been deemed a health hazard to the community and whose owners have failed to keep up with maintenance; and helping to clear Cotulla's utility service alleys.

September 21, 2017

Cowboy spirit

La Salle County Sheriff's Lt. Mike Bostwick drove the department's newest vehicle, a specially equipped Chevrolet crew-cab truck, in the annual Cotulla High School Homecoming Parade through the middle of town on Thursday evening, September 21. The truck was delivered earlier this year and joins the sheriff's office fleet as a K9 officer's vehicle. It includes a ventilated pen for a law enforcement dog as well as other police equipment. Thursday's Homecoming Parade included vehicles and floats decorated in maroon and gold, and featured school and community student groups, sports teams, cheerleaders, class representatives, and local businesses.                     (For more images, see 'PHOTOS')

September 21, 2017

How to be
safe

Members of the Methodist AirCare helicopter service gave a demonstration on Thursday, Sept. 21, to local law enforcement officers on landing zone safety and other measures involved in effecting the safe evacuation of a patient from the scene of an accident or other crisis.
(For more images and story, see 'NEWS')

September 14, 2017

Oh,
what a
relief it is

A team of volunteers from La Salle County traveled to Rockport on the Texas Gulf Coast last week as part of Operation Blessing, a charitable relief effort through SomebodyCares.org in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, which decimated the seaside community and several others at the end of August. Relief workers helped clear debris, remove damaged trees and other obstructions, assess residents' needs as they begin returning to their homes to salvage their belongings and as they begin rebuilding their lives out of the ruins. The hurricane is estimated to have wrought almost total devastation to countless homes and businesses along the Gulf Coast, leaving families without shelter, cutting all utility services including water supplies and wastewater drainage, and forcing school closures. Volunteer workers from La Salle included county employees and Commissioners Erasmo Ramirez Jr. and Noel Niavez. Other relief efforts from La Salle County to the storm-stricken region have included a convoy of trucks bearing drinking water and vital supplies donated by area residents for needy Texans as far away as Victoria. Volunteers and drivers have included county deputies and constables with family and friends.                                                                     (Courtesy photos)

September 8, 2017

Law enforcement officers from across La Salle County were honored with a special tribute at Cotulla High School on Friday morning, September 8, during the traditional pep rally for the evening's varsity football game. Gathering with Sheriff Miguel Rodriguez in the CHS gymnasium to present the Spirit Stick to the senior class were county deputies and officers of the Cotulla Patrol Division, the school resource officer, and agents of the US Border Patrol. (For more, see 'PHOTOS'

True colors

August 14, 2017

Sheriff offers Back-to-School safety tips

By Marc Robertson
Children are starting the new academic year in towns and cities across Texas this month, and for many this means walking to and from school for the first time, while parents resume their morning commute.

In La Salle County, Sheriff Miguel Rodriguez and his officers are reminding the public of vital safety measures to take and to exercise additional caution at the start of the new school year.

“A lot of kids are going to be out there on the street, in the morning and in the afternoon, and it’s going to be important for everyone to be extra careful,” the sheriff said. “We don’t want anyone to get hurt, just because a driver wasn’t paying attention or because someone wasn’t watching for traffic.”

Motorists are being reminded to slow down in school zones and to observe a cellphone ban. Use of cellphones or other mobile devices in a school zone is punishable by a fine up to $200. Citations are filed in municipal court.

All children walking to school are being urged not to wear headphones or earbuds that may hinder them in listening for traffic. Children should stay on the sidewalk where possible and should not cross the street without looking both ways.

“It might be cool to listen to music on your headphones while you’re walking to school, or even to send text messages or watch videos on your phone while you’re walking, but these things are distractions that could mean you’re not paying attention to traffic,” the sheriff said. “I hope kids will put their phones away when they’re walking along the road.”

The sheriff’s office is also reminding parents to encourage their children to use the ‘buddy system’ if they are walking to or from school. Students should always walk with a friend, should never leave anyone behind, and should never accept offers of rides from anyone.

“You all know the rules about Stranger Danger, and this is an important time to think about those rules and to remind your friends,” the sheriff said this week. “If the weather is really bad, take shelter somewhere safe and call home to let your family know where you are. If you are going to walk home with a friend, always make sure your parents know where you are.”

La Salle County sheriff’s deputies will patrol the school zones and monitor traffic flow around campuses. Drivers are reminded to watch for children stepping out from between parked vehicles and always to stop for a school bus loading or offloading students.

“We hope everyone has a safe start for the new school year, and we hope that everyone using the road is careful in school zones,” the sheriff said. “Stop, Look and Listen is always the best rule, but school zone safety is up to all of us, for the sake of the children of our community.”  

August 4, 2017

Beginning new duty

Former La Salle County Deputies (L-R) Leo Martinez and Alfred Gonzales have completed their training and graduated in a ceremony on Friday, August 4, from the Highway Patrol Academy of the Texas Department of Public Safety in Austin. They will now be stationed with the Highway Patrol as Texas State Troopers to begin their patrol careers. Martinez is a native of Cotulla; Gonzales is a Laredo resident. Both served as deputies in La Salle County before applying to join the DPS and passing the rigorous entrance requirements. The academy’s ten-week training course is adapted for participants who are already licensed peace officers and includes physical and academic training and examination in the policies and procedures of the Highway Patrol. Friends and family from across South Texas attended last week’s graduation ceremony and included a number of La Salle County officers with whom the two new troopers have served in their careers.
(Courtesy photo)

August 1, 2017

Finding
what we need

Cotulla schoolchildren keep track of the service providers and exhibitors they have visited on their way through the AB Alexander Convention Center on Tuesday afternoon, August 1, where the annual Back-to-School Health Fair was held and included provisions of school supplies, free backpacks for all, and a wealth of resources and points of contact for information on family wellness, special services and support. The day's activities continued with the traditional Fun Walk & Run at Myers Memorial Stadium.
(For more, see 'PHOTOS')

August 1, 2017

Stand up
for the young ones

Members of the Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of South Texas met at the AB Alexander Convention Center in Cotulla on Tuesday, August 1, to host an informational booth at the annual La Salle County Health Fair, which provided school supplies and educational materials on special services and family wellness to youths and parents alike. The CASA volunteer organization's members speak up for children in court during shelter, custody, foster care and adoption hearings with a focus on addressing the youngsters' immediate and long-term needs for a safe and nurturing home environment. CASA of South Texas is active in Frio and La Salle counties as well as Wilson, Atascosa and Karnes counties, with volunteers maintaining contact with children in all communities in the area and monitoring their progress. Present at the Health Fair on Tuesday were (L-R) Francie Gasch, CASA supervisor; Courtney Llewellyn, CASA volunteer; Amanda Menke, Advisory Board member; Erica Eastham, volunteer; Rosario Morales, CASA board member and La Salle County Sheriff's Office Victims' Advocate; and Louisa Franklin, volunteer.

July 25, 2017

News from
our friends at
Fire &
Rescue

How
it's
done

Young interns serving with the La Salle Fire Rescue & EMS this summer include (L-R) Taylor Cason, Martyn Segura and Ottie Espinoza, who have been learning the many duties carried out by the county's full-time firefighters and emergency responders, in addition to the work required to maintain the brigade's equipment and keep vehicles in top form. This is the first summer that the La Salle County Fire Rescue & EMS has hosted interns. The youths are also being trained how to use lifesaving devices and will be CPR certified, take part in physical fitness exercises with the county’s firefighters, and ride out on emergency calls as observers. To ensure they understand what it is like to wear protective gear, they take part in simulated fire duties wearing fire suits and using breathing devices. Firefighters and Chief Daniel Mendez are commending the youths on their perseverance and on their eagerness to learn more about serving as emergency responders.
(Courtesy photo)

July 7, 2017

The Thin Blue Line

La Salle County Sheriff's Office deputies and administrators were joined by firefighters and medics of the La Salle Fire Rescue & EMS and by agents of the US Border Patrol and troopers of the Texas Department of Public Safety Highway Patrol, Texas Rangers and La Salle County constabulary at 10 a.m. Friday, July 7, in front of the county courthouse for a moment of silence decreed by the Texas Governor's Office as a statewide sign of respect and commemoration for peace officers who are killed in the line of duty. The annual Thin Blue Line event coincided with the funeral in San Antonio of a police officer who was shot to death, and with the anniversary of a shooting in Dallas last year, in which five officers were killed. The Texas and US flags at the courthouse were lowered to half staff for the somber occasion.

July 6, 2017

Beating the heat

Children from across La Salle County have been enjoying the refreshing cool waters and fun at the public swimming pool at the Martinez Park Sports Complex on the southeast side of Cotulla this month, as the summer Get Fit Program attracts scores of school-age youths to its supervised activities. Groups from Cotulla and Encinal have spent afternoon hours at the indoor facility while daytime temperatures have soared into the triple digits. Activity organizers are reporting that the recreational and educational program encourages youth interaction, athletic activity and camaraderie while offering positive reinforcement in an age-appropriate environment.  

July 1, 2017

Showing our colors

La Salle County Sheriff Miguel Rodriguez headed a cavalcade of emergency response and law enforcement vehicles in the annual Cotulla Main Street Program Independence Day Parade, which took place Saturday morning, July 1, through downtown Cotulla.
(See 'PHOTOS')

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