CEDAR PARK, Texas (KXAN) - UPDATE: The City of Cedar Park has hired the law firm of Denton, Navarro, Rocha & Bernal to review the city's police promotion testing process after complaints made their way to the city's Civil Service Commission.
Jennie Huerta with the city said there has been no rate of compensation set for the law firm nor any indication of how long the process will take. The final review will be presented to city staff as soon as it is complete.
Cedar Park police officers want recent promotion test results upheld despite a public admission from their training officer she accidentally gave them real test questions to study with, thinking they were samples.
Now she's willing to take the fall and said as much in front of Cedar Park's Civil Service Commission. Sgt. Cathy Bustos says she only wanted to ease "a lot of stress and a lot of animosity" among the officers testing for corporal or sergeant detective.
Sgt. Bustos told the commission at a special hearing January 9 th, "It was my mistake. I did it. And I would hate to see people punished for my mistake. I had no idea it was the same thing."
That exam process took place in December, and involved 18 Cedar Park police officers. The city received three complaints about the integrity of the test.
The City of Cedar Park's spokesperson, Jennie Huerta said she can say little right now, only that the city's legal team is looking into third party help to resolve the issue.
"The city is engaging in an outside party to review the exam process and report its findings," she said.
Sgt. Bustos told commissioners she offered the sample test questions to lessen the anxiety associated with what she calls a new promotional process for the department.
"I only intended to help. I never intended to hurt anybody or for us to spend any money or to be before you here today," she said.
Other Cedar Park officers who appeared at the commission hearing said they studied long and hard for the exam and that its results should be declared valid. Another quoted civil service law and suggested as long as the release of test material was not intentional, no rule was broken.
Cedar Park Civil Service Commission Chair Barbara Boulware Wells told KXAN once any review comes back, the commission will look at statutes to determine if any rules were broken and what, if any punishment is warranted in this case.
Sgt. Bustos has worked 10 years with Cedar Park police. In all, she has served 19 years in law enforcement. She started her career with the Copperas Cove, Texas police in 1993. In those years, she has taken a large number of training courses ranging from police officer instruction to hostage negotiation, according to records from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education.
She has also had a role on the board of the Cedar Park Police Officers Association , according to its website.
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