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TX: Dimmit Co. sheriff waffles on deal to resign over outside work

By   /   December 10, 2012  /   No Comments

OFF-DUTY: Dimmit County Sheriff Joel Gonzalez says he’s not resigning over a misdemeanor charge of running a security firm without a license.

By Lee Ann O’Neal | Texas Watchdog

HOUSTON — You know it’s rough when the sheriff has a probation officer.

That’s how things stand in Dimmit County, where Sheriff Joel Gonzalez is under pressure to resign over complaints he neglected his duties while running a security firm without a license, the San Antonio Express-News reports.

The charge against the sheriff came from an investigation by the Texas Department of Public Safety that found he had operated Troy Security Services in Catarina and Asherton, each about two hours southwest of San Antonio, from January 2011 through March 2012, without a state license.

Long before he was charged, the sheriff, who was re-elected in November, was being criticized within the community for being hard to find and neglecting his official duties while operating his private security company.

The county attorney has more specific complaints, saying that hundreds of cases were poorly investigated, badly prepared or were delayed beyond the statute of limitations for prosecution.

In a pre-trial diversion deal, Gonzalez agreed to resign effective at the end of the year, and county commissioners were expected to discuss the matter Monday.

But the sheriff’s been blowing off meetings with his probation officer and is now having second thoughts about resigning.

“No sir,” he told a reporter who inquired last week about his leaving office.

The county attorney, who wanted the sheriff arrested, has said he is prepared to file for his removal.

Contact Lee Ann O’Neal at leeann@texaswatchdog.org or 713-980-9777.

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