MYFOXHOUSTON - For the most part Adrian Garcia looms as a well-regarded, life-time public servant and formidable candidate in the race for Mayor.
But opponents and pundits alike see his performance running the nation's third largest jail as a potential political Achilles heel.
Inmates raping inmates, jailers having sex with inmates, inmates dying in confrontations with jailers.
Former Congressman Chris Bell was the first to call Garcia out on August 17.
"You can't run a jail that way and you can't run a city that way," said Bell to Fox 26.
Former City Attorney Ben Hall has been quick to follow, pointing to the case of Terry Goodwin, a mentally ill inmate left for months in filth and human waste.
"You cannot be the chief executive officer of the Sheriff's Department and say you didn't know of those deplorable conditions. It speaks to leadership failure," said Hall.
At today's mayoral forum Fox 26 pressed Garcia to respond on camera.
"It should never of happened, it shouldn't have happened under my watch, but I took full responsibility. I acted. I took actions. I held people accountable. I put policies and procedures in place to make sure it wouldn't happen again. That's what I did. You don't want those things to happen, but you act on those things when you find out about them," said Garcia.
Asked if he expected his jail performance to linger as an issue throughout the campaign
Garcia offered this response.
"I'm in the lead, so obviously there will be shots taken."