History Faculty Publications and Presentations
“Everybody knew the McAllen police were a bunch of tough hombres, especially the Boys on C shift,” reported the Dallas Morning News on March 29, 1981. “Working the midnight-to-8 a.m. shift along the border is like being at war, the cops said. You have to be tough. The Boys on C shift worked at being tough.” Many of the “Boys” wore black T-shirts with gold letters bearing “the legend, ‘C Shift Animals.’ They even had their own slogan: ‘Kick…and Ask Questions Later.’ ” Only days earlier, the public had become aware of their misdeeds, revealed in six years of booking room videos recorded by the McAllen Police Department (MPD) and subpoenaed by a civil rights attorney. On these videos Anglo and Mexican American officers alike confirmed suspicions that they had beaten, kicked, and abused prisoners—in virtually all cases, working-class Mexican Americans.
Campney, Brent M. S. ""A Bunch of Tough Hombres": Police Brutality, Municipal Politics, and Racism in South Texas." Journal of the Southwest, vol. 60, 2018, p. 787-825. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/jsw.2018.0016.
Journal of the Southwest
Published by The Southwest Center, University of Arizona