Patterico's Pontifications

6/6/2007

“Deport the Criminals First” — Part Six of an Ongoing Series: The DUI Murder of Police Chief Ernie Mendoza

Filed under: Crime,Deport the Criminals First,General,Immigration — Patterico @ 12:10 am

["Deport the Criminals First" is a recurring feature on this blog, highlighting crimes committed by illegal immigrants -- with a special focus on repeat offenders. I argue that, instead of arresting illegal immigrants who work hard for a living, we should use our limited immigration enforcement resources to target illegal immigrants who commit crimes in this country -- especially violent crimes.]

I am going to turn over today’s edition to U.S. Representative Ted Poe of Texas. I can’t say it any better than he said it:

Two weeks ago on a dark, cool, misty Texas night, Needville, Texas, Independent School District Chief of Police Ernie Mendoza, was coming home from his job. He had been supervising a basketball game at one of the local schools. As chief of police of Needville Independent School District, it was his job to protect students during school and during events.

However, on the same road was 29-year-old construction worker Guillermo Paniagua. Guillermo was drunk and driving his pickup truck. He was headed toward the chief’s car. And within moments, Gulliermo’s truck crossed the center stripe of the road, slammed head first into the chief of police’s vehicle. The crash instantly killed this dedicated police chief.

The chief had devoted 25 years of his life as one of Texas’s lawmen. It was something that meant a lot to him. He was proud to serve his country as a peace officer. He was a 1983 graduate of the Waco Police Department where he worked in this small central Texas town.

Then he moved on to the big city of Houston, Texas, where he worked with the Houston Independent School District Police Department – one of the Nation’s largest school districts. And then in 1996 he accepted the position with the Needville ISD Police Department where he became chief of police.

ISD police officers have the responsibility to protect children and teachers while they are in school. They maintain law and order and discipline. They keep the kids safe from day to day. And Chief Mendoza was one of the best. He strived to be a positive role model for the kids he protected, and he made peace officers look good.

He took the time to talk to kids and was well liked throughout the school. But it all ended a mile from his own home and the indifference of a drunk driver.

Like most drunk drivers, Guillermo had only minor cuts and bruises. He was not injured. But those bruises did not keep him, the coward, the killer, from running from the scene in the darkness of the night.

He was quickly captured by the Wharton County, Texas Sheriff’s Department, and now he faces first-degree felony murder charges, and failure to stop and render aid.

You see, when you drink and drive and kill somebody, that is a felony. As it ought to be.

Chief Mendoza’s wife and four children are now deprived of their husband, and father for the rest of their lives. The kids of the Needville school system have lost a good protector.

But, Madam Speaker, this was not Guillermo’s first rodeo. You see, he has a total of four intoxication convictions in the United States, two in Texas and two in Georgia. In Texas he was given probation for a DWI, but that was revoked when he was rearrested. And then when he got that second DWI, he only spent 3 days in jail and got 18 months probation and his license was suspended.

This drunk should never have been given his driver’s license back at all. His four DWI convictions proved that the system is not holding him accountable for being a drunk driver.

But the most disturbing thing about Guillermo Paniagua is he is illegally in this country. So why is he still here? How did he get a driver’s license in the first place? Why was his immigration status not checked by the police officers each and every time he was picked up for drunk driving? He should have been deported the first time he was arrested.

Police Chief Ernie Mendoza was killed at the hands of an illegal, a drunk driver. And this could have all been prevented. He and his family have become more victims of the U.S.’s inability to secure the border and protect its citizens.

Madam Speaker, Chief Mendoza was a real person. This is a photograph of him taken shortly before he was killed. The Needville ISD and the great State of Texas have lost a fine lawman. And the casualty list continues to mount in the U.S. by those lawless insurgents who are illegally occupying our land.

This government should be as concerned about the homeland casualties as it is about those casualties killed in lands far, far away. Or there will be more Chief Mendozas killed.

ernie-mendoza-large-picture.jpg

30 Responses to ““Deport the Criminals First” — Part Six of an Ongoing Series: The DUI Murder of Police Chief Ernie Mendoza”

  1. What a sad story. Knowing our Congress could give a whit about the loss of a good man but, rather, will defend this POS who should have been enjoying the taxpayers largesse behind bars just galls me.

    Cheryl (222459)

  2. Another illegal got a notch in his belt on Monday.

    Agrifolia (f6ecc4)

  3. Thanks Pat for keeping the pressure on, not that the a-holes in the US Senate could give a frack.

    I can’t even complain to my Senators – Kyl and McCain – both of whom are deaf, dumb, and blind.

    Mitch (f61519)

  4. He has a total of four intoxication convictions in the United States, two in Texas and two in Georgia.

    Good Lord, I don’t know whether to scream or to cry.

    Patricia (824fa1)

  5. Man, you couldn’t write a better satire than that. Dark and miserable and tragic with an incompetence so overwhelming you almost want to laugh, if only to feel a bit better.

    David N. Scott (71e316)

  6. “And the casualty list continues to mount in the U.S. by those lawless insurgents who are illegally occupying our land.”

    Gee, no hysteria there . . .

    Patterico, there are more than 40,000 Americans killed each year in auto crashes. Nearly half of those deaths — more than 17,000 — were alcohol related. Far more deaths than caused by 9/11 and all subsequent terrorist attacks combined.

    We have accepted the alcohol-related automobile crash as a part of life, with some good-hearted murmurs on behalf of MADD and a few other charities. Americans drive drunk all the time; next to speeding, it’s one of the most-broken laws on the books.

    When illegals drive drunk, they’re just following a grand American tradition that includes the likes of movie stars, politicians, and even the President himself. This isn’t “lawless insurgents who are illegally occupying our land” — no, this is immigrants starting to act like Americans.

    Yes, this grand tradition has tragic results. But the deaths you are trying to pin on illegal immigration are in fact a product of our automobile-centric culture that implicitly accepts thousands, even tens of thousands of drunk driving deaths each year as a social cost of having easy and unlimited accest to personal transportation.

    Phil (427875)

  7. So it’s not a good idea to take steps that will remove from the driving pool people who shouldn’t be driving and may be a risk to others?

    If yuo get one DUI, odds are you’ll get another. Trust me, I’m speaking from experiance.

    Pat’s giving proof that there are illegals that SHOULD have been deported but were not, and thus went on to end a life. A life that would not have been ended the way it was had said illegal been removed from the country.

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  8. Scott Jacobs, in terms of a causation argument it’s an incredibly thin thread. To demonstrate, using the same reasoning:

    I could use Jeffery Dahmer as support for legal abortions. After all, if Dahmer’s mom had had an abortion, he wouldn’t have killed all those people, right?

    I can see it now . . . a pro-choice web site listing all serial killers, and declaring “All of these killers were born. If we just had more abortions, maybe some of these horrible killers wouldn’t have been around to do these terrible things.”

    I could argue that the “pro-life” ads where people talk about how glad they are that they had a baby are one-sided. After all, not every person who is allowed to be born turns out good. Why only talk about the good people when you argue against abortions? You need to recognize that all serial killers were at one point abortable fetuses.

    Phil (427875)

  9. Phil, AFAIK, Patterico’s aim is to provide a counterpoint to the illegal-makes-good anecdotes that media outlets like the LAT and NYT love so much, not to demonstrate that such anecdotes (flattering or otherwise) in themselves prove any larger point about illegals.

    CL (f6ecc4)

  10. The difference, CL, is that the “illegal makes good” stories are not simply a policy statement about immigration; they are human interest stories, demonstrating the potential of human beings.

    That’s what’s so cynical about Patterico’s “illegal makes bad” stories — at their core, they are effectively “counterpoints” to stories about general human potential. That’s why they ring so hollow, just as stories about serial killers as “counterpoint” to stories about happy families would land with a dull thud on a pro-choice web site.

    Phil (427875)

  11. The difference, CL, is that the “illegal makes good” stories are not simply a policy statement about immigration; they are human interest stories, demonstrating the potential of human beings.

    So are Pat’s…

    They demonstrate the demonstrated potential for good of the victim, and needless murder by someone who shouldn’t have been in this country to begin with.

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  12. Patterico’s anecdotes also demonstrate the potential of human beings. Are they to be hidden and left undiscussed because we have to apply as much “positive thinking” as we can and just hope that everything turns out terrific with mass illegal immigration?

    CL (f6ecc4)

  13. “Like most drunk drivers, Guillermo had only minor cuts and bruises.”

    Huh?

    Most people killed by drunk drivers are themselves or their passengers. Being drunk is not an advantage in an accident.

    TomHynes (aab663)

  14. Just show this drunken illegal aleins that america dose not tolerate drunk drivers who kill give him life without parole and screw the mexican goverment

    krazy kagu (484aa9)

  15. Actually, it is Tom, bcause the more stiff you are during the crash, the more likely you’ll break a bone or something. If you go limp, you are less likely to have a more serious injury.

    And since the drunken SOB is too blitzed to grasp that he’s about to slam into something, he’s limp.

    Your talking about deaths due to excessive speed, or vs a tree, or over a cliff. In a car crash, it’s the non-drunks that are likely to die/be seriously injured.

    Add into that the physics of how the cars hit each other, and the one behind the wheel causing the crash is in a better position to not get seriously hurt…

    Scott Jacobs (90eabe)

  16. That’s a terrible tragedy, a great loss for his family and community.

    In addition to enforcing immigration laws we need to get much tougher on drunk and drugged drivers. Regardless of his alien status, this guy should have gotten at least a year in prison for that third offense, and several years for the fourth. Stories like this are why I don’t like my wife and daughter driving on the roads at night.

    Nels Nelson (4a3ac4)

  17. Phil,

    Your abortion analogy doesn’t work at all. An unborn baby is innocent and the question is whether s/he will commit a crime in the future. You have to use hindsight to decide who to abort.

    In contrast, Patterico doesn’t ask us to use hindsight to decide who to deport. All his examples involve cases where the illegal immigrant was already a convicted criminal before causing another person’s death. The illegal immigrant should have already been deported as a criminal.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  18. Just remember, Pattericans, there is a big difference between kneeling down and bending over. BOHICA

    Mitch (a549f7)

  19. I am in complete agreement that illegal criminals should be the first that immigration deals with. What in the world is stopping Congress from acting on this????

    Estrella Eguino (2cce36)

  20. DRJ, the purpose of my analogy was not to refute all of the possible reasons that perhaps illegals who commit crimes should be deported. Maybe they should. And maybe abortion should be legal. I’ve addressed my concerns about the former idea in other posts, and the latter idea isn’t an issue being discussed here.

    The purpose of my analogy was to address the narrower claim that failure to immediately deport illegals who commit crimes “causes” these tragic stories Patterico is recounting. The causal connection is, in fact, as thin as that of anti-abortion policies to crimes committed by babies that grow up to be criminals.

    We know that some babies will commit crimes in the future as surely as we know that some illegal aliens arrested for crimes in this country will commit more crimes later. In that sense, my analogy works as intended.

    Phil (427875)

  21. As a 30 year cop in Texas I’ve arrested my fair share of “wetbacks”, now known as illegal aliens. Most were hard working individuals who got rowdy during a weekend. Immigration didn’t have time for them.

    I once stopped a pickup traveling north on IH 35 in San Marcos, Texas with 29 illegals, immigration didn’t have time for them…it was after hours on the week end.

    I arrested a Mexican dope dealer in San Antonio who sexually abused a 14 year old girl. I contacted immigration in the hopes of getting a hold placed on him, so that he couldn’t make bail on drug an child sexual abuse charges. Immigration had time for him, he was deported almost immediately.

    Be careful what you wish for.

    PAUL BATTAGLIA (43784a)

  22. The purpose of my analogy was to address the narrower claim that failure to immediately deport illegals who commit crimes “causes” these tragic stories Patterico is recounting. The causal connection is, in fact, as thin as that of anti-abortion policies to crimes committed by babies that grow up to be criminals.

    . . . .

    We know that some babies will commit crimes in the future as surely as we know that some illegal aliens arrested for crimes in this country will commit more crimes later. In that sense, my analogy works as intended.

    Phil, your analogy makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, in part for the reason DRJ suggested.

    Remember the L.A. Times story on the early release policy from L.A. jails? (I wrote about it here.) The story documented some crimes that would not have happened absent the early release policy.

    It would have been absurd to respond to that by invoking abortion, just as it is utterly absurd for you to respond to my posts by invoking abortion. If you could come up with an example in which 1) the aborted babies had done something to deserve to be aborted; 2) the law already states that they should be aborted for having committed the deed; 3) we’re not aborting all the babies the law says we should abort; and 4) one of the babies whom we can identify as one that should have been aborted kills someone — then, you’d be cooking with gas.

    As it is, you’re bone dry of any relevance at all. It’s just a patently silly example. Sorry. I calls ‘em like I sees ‘em.

    Patterico (eeb415)

  23. Scott Jacobs:

    Being drunk actually increases the injuries, according to this research:

    Alcohol and Injuries

    Also difficult, says Zink, is erasing the notion that being drunk can actually protect people from injury because they’re “more relaxed.” “We’ve observed that alcohol worsens injury and increases mortality, after motor vehicle crashes in particular,”

    TomHynes (aab663)

  24. The difference, CL, is that the “illegal makes good” stories are not simply a policy statement about immigration; they are human interest stories, demonstrating the potential of human beings.

    Steve Lopez talked about using these stories as a policy statement about illegal immigration. I am responding in kind.

    Patterico (eeb415)

  25. TomHynes,

    That may be. There are plenty of anecdotes to the contrary. But based on what you have said, these anecdotes are probably like the anecdotes about how it’s better not to wear seatbelts — they exist, but they fly in the face of the statistics. You just hear about them because when it happens, it’s something people want to talk about.

    Patterico (eeb415)

  26. I don’t care how your parse it, these illegals are in this country in violation of our laws. Whether their further crimes are infractions, misdemeanors, or felonies, does not excuse the lack of interest, and or incompetence, on the part of the Federal Government in dealing with this problem.

    Deport the criminals now, build the fence, and then we’ll deal with the rest!

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  27. Meanwhile, Mayor Reconquista is in Washington asking for another $1 billion for gang prevention– or anything but law enforcement–money. On the heels of the Hector Marroquin scandal, this is doubly ridiculous!

    Anti-Gang bill

    Patricia (824fa1)

  28. [...] “Deport the Criminals First” — Part Six of an Ongoing Series: The DUI Murder of Police Chief E… [...]

    The Voices of Citizens to the Senate at Traction Control (acd9fb)

  29. To all that judge it’s book by its cover,
    For all of yall that believe this, ya’ll believe anything and everything. Let me just clarified this statement about Guillermo he did not killed Mr.Mendoza despite of his priors. And if you want the true story about this incident trying asking me. I wasn’t thier,But Wharton DPS,WPD and the legal system is a joke to all that don’t know how corrupted Wharton County is, Thats even if its lieng to the taxpayers citizen’s to protected them one of them. What happen back in 2001 when a young child by the name of Angela Nino was killed by a drunk driver (Polak)and had serveral charges drop, just because he was white and was only given TWO YEARS DEF ADJUDICATION.and had priors too. Let me see you eat theses apples. Do your homework first before going to judge someone by it’s race.
    And he did not go

    Loretta Romo (aeb9b1)

  30. thanks for thea article, love Tony Romo.. he has taken the NFL and POP Culture by storm!

    Tony Romo (4f8f8f)


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