Chief deputy speaks out after Falls County sheriff indicted, suspended

Published: Oct. 5, 2020 at 10:47 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 6, 2020 at 10:12 AM CDT
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MARLIN, Texas (KWTX) - Falls County Commissioners Monday reaffirmed their decision authorizing Chief Deputy Derick Johnson to take over for their indicted Sheriff, Ricky Scaman.

“It is our belief that we took the appropriate action on Friday," said County Judge Jay Elliott. "We are not looking to take anymore action at this time.”

The commissioners held a special meeting Friday afternoon to discuss staffing at the Sheriff’s Office after the Texas Commission Law Enforcement (TCOLE) suspended Scaman’s license to be a peace officer in response to a felony indictment Sept. 21 charging Scaman with sexual assault, assault on a public servant and official oppression.

Commissioners decided, in a resolution, for Johnson to assume the duties of Sheriff until Scaman’s TCOLE suspension is lifted or he’s removed from office.

Even with the new responsibility, Johnson said not much would change.

“Pretty much any chief at any sheriff’s office, they’ll tell you the same thing: we’re normally responsible for running the day-to-day operation for the sheriff’s office and the jail," said Johnson

When asked how he felt about the situation involving Scaman, he said “innocent until proven guilty", and the system needs to play itself out.

“I’ve spent 25 years being part of that system and representing it, and so obviously I believe in that," said Johnson.

No matter what happens, he says, the work doesn’t stop, so they won’t either.

“Our officers are going to continue doing what it is that they’ve been doing," said Johnson. “It’s just going to be business as usual.”

While Scaman can’t be at work or act as a law enforcement officer right now, he continues to run for reelection and fight the charges.

His attorney, Hoagie Karels said Monday they are appealing TCOLE’s suspension.

The agency confirmed to KWTX Monday, they’d received a request for a hearing to appeal the suspension.

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