Stories by Blake Herzog
Eloy Police Department Chief Chris Vasquez has retired, again, after serving with Pinal County law enforcement for 47 years.
He was honored at his retirement celebration in September for, among other career accomplishments, “a complete evolution of professionalism within the department” through expanded community outreach, improved technology, a traffic enforcement unit and high expectations.
Lt. Byron Gwaltney is now serving as interim chief.
Vasquez had led the force since 2017 after holding interim chief positions for Casa Grande, Kearny and Winslow. His career began with the Casa Grande department in 1976, retiring as a lieutenant in 1996.
He then took an offer from then-sheriff Roger Vanderpool to become a captain in the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office, rising to chief deputy the next year. He was appointed sheriff in 2005 after Vanderpool took command of the Arizona Department of Public Safety, holding that office until 2009.
He remains a member of the Arizona Peace Officers Training and Standards board.
Vasquez is an Eloy native and a Vietnam veteran. He and his wife Patricia, married for 34 years, have four children, 15 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren, several of whom have chosen law enforcement or military careers.