A new era starts this week for a police department that is looking for a way to change after what’s been a tough couple of years.
The new chief of police, Eddie Garcia's first day on the job is Wednesday. He's already passed the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement exam and will be wearing the Dallas police uniform on day one.
The Dallas Police Department tweeted a picture of Garcia in the uniform around 8 a.m. "We are excited and looking forward to this new chapter in our organization," the tweet said.
Garcia also shared a photo of him participating virtually in the City Council meeting. When asked about a swearing-in ceremony, he said he didn't want a formal event.
"This new mission isn’t about me. It’s about our city and the men and women guarding it. I know I’m the chief, my officers know and my community knows," he said. "We have work to do!"
In December, Garcia told WFAA that he would be working even before his first official day. He said he would be working on things such as a violence reduction plan and reaching out to the department’s rank and file so he can hit the ground running.
The violent crime rate has increased over the past couple of years and the police associations said the Dallas Police Department is struggling with low morale and the ability to retain officers.
Reducing crime and improving community trust were the top two priorities the city identified during their search.
Garcia comes from San Jose, California, and was born in Puerto Rico. He will be the first Latino police chief in the history of Dallas, a city that is more than 40% Latino.