Bexar County Sheriff Susan Pamerleau said Monday that the agency’s cold case unit would not be disbanded -- only realigned.
“We're not disbanding it, we are assigning those cases to investigators that are trained and skilled in investigations," she said.
Pamerleau made the announcement during an afternoon press conference which was called after a cold case detective posted on the Bexar County Cold Case's Facebook page sometime over the weekend, "I have been informed that our Unit, the Bexar County Sheriff's Office B.C.S.O Cold Case Unit is going to be abolished.”
Pamerleau said the Facebook page is not an official Bexar County Sheriff’s Office social media page.
Beginning Oct. 1, the two deputies whose sole duty was investigating cold cases will be given other responsibilities.
“A more effective way of addressing cold cases was by placing this function with investigators instead of just with patrol officers who were doing a good job,” Pamerleau said.
It is unclear whether the new investigators would only look into cold cases, as it will depend on how the work is distributed.
The sister of a murder victim said she’s concerned that her brother’s case would not receive the same amount of attention it had been receiving for the last several months.
She’s also worried about any disciplinary action that may be taken against the deputy who wrote the Facebook post.
The investigators will work under the supervision of George Saidler, deputy chief of the Criminal Investigation Unit.
“What it takes is some training and experience to think outside the box and come up with new ideas that haven’t been done by investigators that already worked these cases,” Saidler said.
Despite the realignment, Pamerleau was confident that the new investigators will form strong relationships with the families of cold case victims.
“I assured them personally that through our criminal investigation division that we will keep them informed.”