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The March primary elections are complete in Hidalgo County.
This week several seats were up for grabs. Among them were sheriff, constable, justice of the peace and county court at law judge. Familiar faces in the county vied for election and re-election as the results were calculated Tuesday evening.
Sheriff J.E. “Eddie” Guerra secured his place on the ticket with a clear margin of victory. Tuesday evening his campaign and supporters watched the numbers roll in at Costa Messa on N. 10th St. in McAllen.
Guerra arrived to applause as the early voting results tallied, showing he already had over 60 percent of the vote for the Democratic ticket. Guerra ran against Raul Salinas and Frank Guerrero.
By the time all precincts reported, Guerra had secured 63 percent of the vote with approximately 39,910 votes, Guerrero secured 28 percent with approximately 17,605 votes and Salinas secured 10 percent with approximately 6,356 votes.
Guerra said he was “overwhelmed” by the support he received, calling the campaign stressful.
“I look forward to getting back to running the Sheriff’s Office,” Guerra said. “I’m honored that I lead the seventh largest Sheriff’s Office in the state of Texas. I wish the citizens of Hidalgo County can see the good work that the staff does at the office, and I am honored and privileged to be their sheriff.”
Guerra spoke highly of all his supporters, who he said made everything possible.
“I feel great,” Guerra said. “First of all I want to thank God, I want to thank my family, I want to thank all my staff, my supporters, and I want to thank all the voters of this county for their vote of confidence.”
Guerra is going into his third term as sheriff. Moving forward, he said he plans to keep the county growing.
“It looks like a pretty good margin, and that’s a pretty good statement that the voters in this county agree with the direction that the sheriff’s office is going in,” Guerra said. “We’re going to keep expanding on what we’re doing, we’re going to strengthen all our relationships with federal, state and local partners and look for innovative ways to add technology out there that helps us combat crime.”
In the November general election, Guerra will face Republican Ezequiel “Zeik” Jurado, who received 9,897 votes in the GOP primary.
Patricia “Patty” O’Caña-Olivarez ran against Abiel Flores for the Judge’s seat in County Court of Law No. 9 for the Democratic primary. O’Caña-Olivarez won the evening, claiming 62 percent of the votes (37,549), while Flores got 38 percent (23,307 votes).
Precinct No. 3 Justice of the Peace was also up for grabs, and Dr. Sonia Treviño ran against Marco De Luna. After an evening of back and forth in numbers, Treviño secured 52 percent of the vote with 9,864 and De Luna secured 48 percent with 9,233.
Treviño became the first woman to ever be elected to this seat and expressed pride in the accomplishment.
“It is official, we made history. Thank you, I will continue to make you proud,” Treviño said in a social media post.
De Luna congratulated his opponent in a statement to the Progress Times.
“From the bottom of my heart I want to thank everyone who helped me throughout our whole campaign,” De Luna said. “I want to congratulate Dr. Sonia Treviño on her victory as our new Justice of the Peace.
The Constable for Precinct No. 3 seat was vied for by Miguel Flores and Larry Gallardo. Gallardo ran for his sixth term in office, securing over 60 percent of the vote with 11,092, and Guerra, who challenged with 40 percent and 7,247.
Flores resigned from the Sheriff’s Office to run and was a key whistleblower in the Panama Unit scandal, which exposed corruption in the county and affected public trust of Hidalgo County law enforcement officials. This was the first time Gallardo faced a challenger since 2004, and is the longest serving constable in Hidalgo County.
This story was originally published in the Friday, March 6, 2020 edition of the Progress Times