Wichita County Decide Woody Gossom mentioned Commissioner Jeff Watts, who’s charged with DWI, can legally proceed to carry workplace if he’s convicted.
However Gossom mentioned a Wichita County employee charged with tampering with a authorities doc whereas moonlighting in the Clay County Sheriff’s Workplace has been fired.
A county court-at-law choose granted Wichita County Commissioner Jeff Watts an occupational driver’s license the day earlier than his common license was suspended April 7 in connection along with his misdemeanor, first-offense DWI cost, in response to court docket paperwork.
As for anybody questioning why Watts continues serving after being charged with DWI, Gossom mentioned they “is likely to be extra involved concerning the Texas Legal professional Common who has been beneath felony indictment since taking workplace.”
Gossom was referring to Texas Legal professional Common Ken Paxton, who was indicted on felony prices of securities fraud in July 2015 in Collin County.
Paxton has pleaded not responsible to the nonetheless pending prices.
Watts is accused of being drunk when he wrecked his pickup in a one-vehicle rollover Feb. 18 close to Electra, in response to allegations in court docket information.
Not lengthy earlier than the wreck that day, a witness mentioned Watts hit a put up driving as much as the Wichita County Annex Constructing-Precinct 4 north of Electra, after which he was unsteady on his toes strolling up to the door, in response to allegations in a possible trigger affidavit for an arrest warrant.
A Texas Division of Public Security trooper was notified of a crash about 7:08 p.m. that day and arrived to seek out first responders extracting Watts from his pickup, which was on its aspect in a bar ditch off State Freeway 25 south of Electra, in response to allegations within the affidavit.
Watts did not understand he had been in a crash, spoke with slurred speech, smelled of alcohol and was confused, in response to allegations within the affidavit.
In a Feb. 22 assertion, Watts admitted to ingesting and driving that day, and requested for Wichita County residents’ forgiveness and promised it could by no means occur once more.
If convicted, Watts faces as much as 180 days in jail and a positive as much as $2,000.
Test again with www.timesrecordnews.com for extra on this growing story.
After his Feb. 18 wreck, Watts refused to offer a pattern for a blood-alcohol check, so the trooper obtained a blood proof warrant to power Watts to offer one, in response to allegations within the blood proof warrant.
Since Watts refused a pattern for a check, his driver’s license was suspended for 180 days.
Watts petitioned Wichita County Court docket At Legislation No. 1 to acquire an occupational driver’s license so he might carry out his duties as a commissioner and a farmer and rancher, court docket information present.
His license was to be suspended due to an administrative license revocation after his arrest on suspicion of DWI, court docket information present.
Decide Gary Butler granted Watts’ request April 6, the day earlier than Watts’ suspension was to enter impact, court docket paperwork present.
Butler put restrictions in place, together with that Watts not be convicted of any transferring site visitors violations, drive not more than 12 hours in any 24-hour interval, and drive solely between 7 a.m. and seven p.m. and solely in Wichita, Clay and Archer counties, court docket filings present.
Watts can also’t refuse a request for a pattern of breath, blood or urine if he’s detained for a DWI investigation, in response to court docket information.
Butler granted the occupational driver’s license for the 180 suspension, in addition to an extra time interval till he will get his license again from the DPS, court docket information present.
Watts didn’t reply to requests for remark Friday about his plans for the long run.
His legal professional didn’t reply to requests for remark by the deadline for Tuesday’s print version.
Watts and Gossom oversee the county’s Data Expertise Division the place Ashley Leigh Culley, 40, was assistant director earlier than she was terminated after being charged with a misdemeanor.
Culley is accused of falsifying a doc for a Texas Division of Public Security audit in reference to a June 3, 2019, incident, in Clay County, in response to allegations in court docket information.
If convicted, she faces as much as a yr in jail and a positive as much as $4,000.
She was on paid administrative go away whereas the county performed an inner evaluation, Gossom mentioned.
Culley’s attorneys have mentioned the allegation in opposition to her is unfaithful and “a private assault.”
Clay County Sheriff Jeff Lyde has declined to answer the assertion from Culley’s attorneys.
Her attorneys didn’t reply to requests for remark by the deadline for Tuesday’s print version.
Wichita County Human Sources Director Tania Dashing mentioned Monday afternoon that she forwarded TRN’s query for the date of Culley’s termination and her employment to Wichita County District Legal professional’s Workplace Civil Chief Tracey Jennings as an open information request.
Trish Choate, enterprise watchdog reporter for the Occasions Document Information, covers schooling, courts, breaking information, politics and extra. Contact Trish with information suggestions at email@example.com. Her Twitter deal with is @Trishapedia.