In Memory of Deputy Constable Manuel Phillipe De La Rosa
Texas Constable Dies Due to COVID19
Texas, as a state, has been hit especially hard by the coronavirus pandemic. They have lost more law enforcement officers to the virus than any other state in the US. Deputy Constable Manuel Phillipe De La Rosa, also known as ‘Manny’ by his friends, died of post-COVID complications on Tuesday, February 16, 2021, in Austin, Texas. He was 51 years old.
It was determined that De La Rose likely contracted the virus during his duties delivering court documents to area residents through contact tracing. De La Rose was a proud member of the Hays County Constable’s Office, where he wore badge number 8203.
Overall, De La Rosa has had more than 15 years as a law enforcement officer. Before he began service through the Hays County Constable’s Office, De La Rosa had served with the Bridgeport Police Department, Sunset Valley Police Department, Texas State University Police Department, and the Hays County Sheriff’s Office.
A genuine leader, De La Rosa dreamed of becoming a police officer. He graduated from McCallum High School in Austin, Texas. He then pursued a sociology degree from the University of Texas. De La Rosa received his Peace Officer Certification in May 2006.
After he began his position with the Hays County Constable’s Office, he had spoken about his future. De La Rosa’s own words were that his new job had “opened his eyes to another way he could serve his community, and he was looking forward to running for public office in the near future.” We will never know what difference he could have made for others.
Hays County Constable’s Office – Precinct 2
The position of ‘Constable’ is not available in every state. What does it mean to be a constable? What is the difference between a constable and a police officer?
The job of Constable was established by King Alfred of England in 871 AD. At that time, “the Constable was the highest Judge in the Military offenses and in questions of chivalry and honor.” The first constable appointed in the US was in 1632. At that time, the job meant that he was the leading justice of the peace. Constables were appointed in Texas beginning in 1876.
De La Rosa enjoyed his position with the Hays County Constable’s Office. He was assigned to Precinct 2. Hays County has five individual precincts. Today, a constable has various duties. Deputy Constables serve as the Bailiff in Justice Court. They are also responsible for administering and executing Civil Process and Civil Court orders. Constables have the same authority as police officers meaning they can write tickets, make arrests and file criminal charges.
COVID19 has brought devastation to the lives of many Texans, many Americans. Worldwide the numbers lost are too staggering to comprehend. Deputy Constable Manuel Phillipe De La Rosa leaves behind his daughter, father, and sister. He also had many colleagues he thought of as family. It will take the entire community’s support to honor the sacrifice made by De La Rose and help the family through their time of need.
Steve Wightman of The Big Shout Out posted shared sympathies on social media. “Honoring Hays County, Texas, Constable’s Office – Precinct 2, Deputy Constable Manuel Phillipe De La Rosa, died February 16, 2021, after contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty while serving papers. Honor him, so he is not forgotten.”
The National Fraternal Order of Police announced the loss of Deputy Constable De La Rosa on their Facebook page. “Blessed are the Peacemakers. Deputy Constable De La Rosa. Hays County Constable’s Office – Precinct 2, Texas. EOW Tuesday, February 16, 2021.”
The Fraternal Order of Prince George’s County Police shared the announcement of the loss with area residents on their social media pages. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family, friends, and comrades in arms of Deputy Constable Manuel Phillipe De La Rosa of the Hays County Constable’s Office – Precinct 2, Texas.”