Dallas Co. Commissioners Court Meets 1 Day After FBI Search

dalco commish court Dallas Co. Commissioners Court Meets 1 Day After FBI Search

Dallas County Commissioners Court. (credit: CBSDFW.COM)

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – Despite it being one day after the FBI searched the office of six-term commissioner John Wiley Price, his top assistant and the home and office of a political consultant, Price and his colleagues conducted business as usual in Tuesday’s standard Commissioners Court meeting.

As always, Price arrived at the county administration building before 6 a.m. on Tuesday. He was in his seat when County Judge Clay Jenkins gaveled the court into session at 9 a.m.

“I was fully prepared for today,” Jenkins said. “As far as any extra preparation this morning? I prayed a little longer than usual, but it’s business as usual here in Dallas County.”

Price took part in discussions on redistricting and honored two departing members of the District Attorney’s office who were instrumental in the Innocence Project, which has helped free wrongly convicted men and women in the county.

“Yesterday was yesterday and today’s a new day and it’s Commissioners Court day and it’s business as usual,” Price said. “I stay focused on the big picture. You don’t worry about the minutia, because if that’s the case you’d constantly be off task.”

There were no heated discussions during the quiet meeting, although Commissioner Mike Cantrell announced afterward that he may sue colleague Maurine Dickey for incorrectly saying his office was also being searched by the FBI.

“What I’ve been told is she knew it was a false statement that she was making and still continued to proffer that statement,” Cantrell said. “It was done with the intention to damage my reputation, and I’m not going to sit back and just let somebody do that.”

Commissioner Mike Cantrell on 1080 KRLD: 

Dickey said she meant no malice in her comments to the media, saying she believed what she was saying to be factual.

“I’m sorry he misunderstood; that’s what my staff told me before I got to the building yesterday and what I believed exactly what the situation was,” Dickey said.

On June 7, the Republican commissioner accused Cantrell – the only other Republican on the court – of “pulling a sham” on their political party and throwing her under the bus. Dickey was upset after a redistricting plan was approved that will move her district into a Democratic one. She is not seeking reelection.

Public access was limited Monday to the downtown building where the commissioners meet, a structure formerly known as the Texas School Book Depository, after law enforcement personnel and vehicles were seen outside Price’s office.

Price, who has held office for more than 25 years, said he didn’t know the reason for the search.

“They’re not telling us very much. You guys know probably as much or more than we know,” Price told KRLD Morning News anchors Mike Rogers, Bonnie Petrie, and Scott Sams. “So, we’re just waiting to see what it’s all about. They did not attach an affidavit, so we don’t know.”

Commissioner John Wiley Price on 1080 KRLD:

When federal investigators searched the DeSoto house belonging to Price’s assistant, Dapheny Fain, they removed 10 boxes of files and searched two vehicles there; one of them a 2005 Bentley, valued between $130,000 and $150,000, registered to Price.

They also searched a pickup truck Price drove and a BMW convertible Fain was driving, both of which are registered to Price’s political consultant Kathy Nealy.

When told that some are questioning how a person living on a commissioner’s court salary can have a Bentley Price responded, “I’ve had one new car in my life. All of my cars are used cars and pre-owned and believe me I finance them like everybody else.”

The Bentley was previously owned by an inmate. Records show Price obtained a clear title on his Bently and four other vehicles through a public hearing at the county assessor’s office. The assessor’s office said Tuesday all of Prices requests were approved. Price has nine cars in total.

“Our job is not to question the vehicle people are buying, just to make sure the paperwork is in order,” County Tax Assessor John Ames said.

Fain would not comment on the vehicles as she left for the day in Price’s campaign car.

Price, 61, has engaged in numerous public protests, most aimed at improving minority employment. Several have led to his arrest.

Price’s attorney, Billy Ravkind, said the FBI declined to tell him when it would unseal the affidavit supporting the search warrant. He said the warrants ask for “everything in the [federal] criminal code.”

The veteran criminal defense attorney said he’s learned some information about the case from witnesses and that those allegations are “bull.” He declined to be more specific but added that the searches are worrisome for Price.

“Anyone would be concerned if 20-plus agents dropped down and visited your office,” Ravkind told The Associated Press.

Three of the search warrants – two for Price’s cars and one for his person – concerned any electronic storage devices, including things like personal computers, mobile phones, personal data assistants, iPhones, iPads, disks and thumbdrives. The warrants also sought any computer cookies and passwords dating back to 2001, in addition to safety deposit box keys and sums of cash of $500 or more.

The searches occurred on the same day as the inauguration of newly elected Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, who received strong support from Price.

The federal warrants concerned possible crimes including Theft or Bribery Concerning Programs Receiving Federal Funds; Attempt To Evade or to Defeat Tax; Structuring Transactions to Evade Reporting Requirements; and Laundering of Money Instruments.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)



    • CB

      It took 25 years to investigate him, because there is A LOT to investigate. John Gotti was spied on by the FBI for over two decades.

      • dave game

        Coloreds have ruined this once great country.

  • Honest John

    Channel 11, stay on it. We hold you accountable to tell us where that Bentley came from. Oh yes, there was a Lotus also. He has a car collection like Jay Leno. I think Dallas taxpayers will have a huge windfall when these are siezed and returned to the taxpayers. Citizens of Dallas County should be furious, not supportive. Apparently he has been helping himself and not his people. Just explain how these vehicles are purchased on a commisioner’s salary. A gift? From who?

    • Ken

      A car collection like Jay Leno!? Really. A windfall? If he’s owned several luxury cars for years why only now this search?

    • d youman

      You know its funny how a few trinkets can get people such as yourself all bent out of shape; if you strive to have; you will have; if you waste, you go with out… if he has a few so-called luxury vehicles and you don’t boo-hoo on you… I have not worked for 5 years and i drive a mercedes ml-350 as a work car. If you don’t, you need to search deep within yourself and find out WHY YOU DON’T… As far as Mr. Price, if he has committed any wrong doing, and I think h has not, as he stated he will his day in court, as far as you Nay-Sayer’s (sit down and shut the hell up)…

  • http://dallasforme.com/2011/06/1-day-after-fbi-search-dallas-co-commissioners-court-set-to-meet-2/ 1 Day After FBI Search Dallas Co. Commissioner?s Court Set To Meet — Me and the Chicks

    […] of a six-term commissioner, his top assistant and the home and office of a political consultant. More from: http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2011/0… PreviousPost […]

  • Arlesia Tieuel

    Strange when you don’t have anything yourself, you can’t stand when an African American does…

    • Tom

      Now you had to go and throw race in it. Typical

      • HH

        Typical of what/whom? Blacks?

    • Fed up!

      No! Strange is when a rip off, racist, no good black hairy *ss – hole like price owns luxury cars such as a Bentley on a commissioner’s court salary. What do you call a black man with no arms? Trustworthy!

      • PBTEXAS

        You have some racial issues that needs to be checked out. Did a black man take your girl?

      • HH


      • d youman

        An what do you call a person such as”Fed up!” — LOSER, without a cause, get yo butt in gear and then you can have the finer things in life, or stay where you are and WaDdLe in your our stink, LOSER…

    • tom

      JWP, an african-american has alot. Alot of trouble on his hands, that is.

  • Richard S

    Arlesia, It seems that you have a problem with the truth. JWP is the poster child for corruption in office. If there is anything that does NOT fit his perception as to the way things should be he fights tooth and nail, spouting off that all those out there who do not agree with him are “White Racist”. If you were to look up the definition of racist you would find his picture right there with the definition.

  • HH

    Why bring race into this? He’s a corrupt politician/”public servant”. Race knows no barrier when a giant culture of corruption festers in a town or city. Eventually, nearly everyone is on the take.

    • Sheri

      Because he is a Black Panther and if that’s not racist, what is?!!

      • HH

        Again, what the hell does him being a racist have to do with race in his corruption case? You argument is moot and infantile.

      • d youman

        And if he were White would that may him right; sit down, take a deep breath and think about it… The man helps others, sorry you were not included…

  • Sheri

    That old Black Panther is finally going to have his spots examined!! How great is this!! “A champion of equal opportunity and social injustice”, HAH!! What kind of champion steals from the taxpayers and keeps trouble stirred? A thug, Black Panther!! Everyone knows what their motto is (and I won’t say it)!

  • trishakay

    JWP has been a huge black eye on dallas all these yearsI think this is wonderful.Icant wait for him to fall,and fall hard.And he is the racist of all racist.

    • d youman

      Trishakay, think about that statement you made… Hmmm.. Sounds like someone needs 2 look in the mirror

  • charmoll

    If he has nothing to hide why do you put your Bentley in your admin’s garage? The FBI doesnt swoop down and use all its resources if they dont have something on you. So he better enjoy his freedom while he has it. I cant wait to hear what all dirty deeds he has done!

  • Fysti

    Corruption knows no gender, race, bank account balance or standing in a community. However, it can CONSIDERABLY raise the latter two.

    This needs to be persued as long as it takes to get the truth out in the open. Bring the facts to the table. Past history challanges may or my not be relivant. If it is, it’s in the mix..

    Dallas belongs to all of us! Stay abreast of what is taking place around us. Ask questions of officials if you are unclear on issues.

    Corruption will always be a problem. That does not say we have to ignore it.

  • AL

    this remind me of a western movie, bad man in town no one saying anything as soon as something bad happen. everyone come out of the woodworks. why we are so judgemental , thats for the courts and the little things that happen to you you cant figure it out -one finger pointed in one direction thumb pointed at YOU

  • marty griffin

    Hows about that black spade Michael Irvin suing me. I’m the man. I make tne news baby. I am the news.

    • C Bauer

      Your Marty Griffin jokes are 1) Already old, and 2) inaccurate – Marty worked for Channel 5 before they sh!itcanned him.

  • http://dallasforme.com/2011/06/dallas-co-commissioners-court-meets-1-day-after-fbi-search/ Dallas Co. Commissioner?s Court Meets 1 Day After FBI Search — Me and the Chicks

    […] of a six-term commissioner, his top assistant and the home and office of a political consultant. More from: http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2011/0… PreviousPost […]

  • tom

    Monday was a wonderful day for the citizens of Dallas County.
    The day when charges are filed against JWP will be another great day for Dallas County. But the BEST day will be when he finally reports to prison.

  • Hemroidious

    Price says “that after 27 years he should be able to own a couple of automobiles”. And he is right, but he forgets one thing, that he holds public office. That means that he is obligated to be open and forth coming with any any and ALL such matters. Transparency is not just a word thrown around by politicians hoping to get elected.
    It is an obligation owed by any elected person in office from the President down to the last elected official on a city or county level. This is mandatory and is expected by the people who elect them. If any politician thinks that they are above this, that they don’t have to, then my friend, they do not belong in office. We as voters demand it.

  • NiteNurse

    You know JWP did not look like he was bothered one bit. He has had numerous investigations before and seems to have weathered them quite well. So why should this one be any different?

    • DH

      The people who will be involved in the trial have probably been on his payroll for years already. Scot free is my prediction.

  • Mary Pratt

    My experience with life, when you digging one hole you better dig two, because if not you be throw in a undig or dug hole. We need wait and see. If you know anything about the FBI, they only come when there is solid information. Life meaning certain people will help you up, but will knock you down. On your wait up, please , ” Take the Lord along with you, You are going to need him. In your Home, On your Job, In the Courthouse, In the Street. You better take the Lord along with you. That my Congregation Song, I sing a Church, when I am lead by the Spirit

  • http://dallasforme.com/2011/06/dallas-co-commissioners-court-meets-1-day-after-fbi-search-4/ Dallas Co. Commissioners Court Meets 1 Day After FBI Search — Me and the Chicks

    […] of a six-term commissioner, his top assistant and the home and office of a political consultant. More from: http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2011/0… PreviousPost […]

  • truepatriot

    You need to realize just HOW he acquired these vehicles…by getting title granted to him by a secret committee that is appointed by the County Commissioners. As a public servant he can’t be involved in any shady deals…these vehicles belonged to people in jail who were suddenly released after he took possession of them. You can’t ignore these facts. Go ahead and stick your heads in the sand, but the FBI does not investigate unless there is a strong reason to do so. Where there is smoke, there is certainly fire.

  • Crbe1519

    Hey, L.Miller. cut a deal (FBI) Why can’t JWP? Oops! He’s black no deal

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