Sweetwater names interim police chief

Jesus Menocal replaces retiring Police Chief Roberto Fulgueira

Author: Ben Candea, Senior Web Producer, bcandea@local10.com
Published On: Oct 24 2013 12:26:02 PM EDT   Updated On: Oct 24 2013 03:33:14 PM EDT
Jesus Menocal
SWEETWATER, Fla. -

The acting mayor of Sweetwater named an interim police chief.

Mayor Jose Diaz on Thursday announced the retirement of Roberto Fulgueira a few days following the death of Fulgueira's mother.

His replacement: former Sweetwater Deputy Police Chief Jesus Menocal.

"I'm very honored and grateful that Major Jose Diaz gave me the opportunity," he said.

"I think that at this point he will be the best person in that position to continue leading the city to the future that we want to achieve," added Diaz.

The move comes as a trying time for the city. Former Mayor Manny Maroño and his former chief of staff, Jorge Forte, pleaded not guilty to corruption charges last week.

"It's been a very difficult time. It was something that nobody expected," said Diaz. "Since we are not allowed -- the commissioners and including myself -- to speak to former Mayor Maroño, it's been extremely challenging."

Menocal hopes to restore the public's trust.

"Our job is to make sure that the gray cloud over the city -- that we can clear it and put some sunshine over the city of Sweetwater," he said. "We are very professional, ethical, and we are going to strive to do everything by the color of law."