COCKRELL HILL (CBSDFW.COM) – A crowd of residents marched to city hall in Cockrell Hill Thursday night, asking city leaders to take stronger action following the resignation of police chief, Michael Sellers. He resigned last week, after a citizen told the city the chief was selling cars police had towed and considered abandoned.
Documents obtained by CBS11 show two motorcycles, a car, van and two SUV’s were sold last year. All of the sale prices were between $200 and $340.
CBS11 spoke to two of the buyers, who would not say how they learned about the vehicles being for sale, or if they personally knew Sellers.
Sellers made no mention of the sales in his retirement letter. Another employee who resigned, senior dispatcher Lisa Maire, wrote in her letter “I did advise when I was hired I knew nothing about dealing with the impounds or auctions.”
State code says law enforcement agencies may sell abandoned items, or use them for agency purposes. The city has turned the case over to the district attorney.
Residents waited in front of city hall Thursday until Mayor Luis Carrerra arrived to speak with them. He said any additional investigation into the matter, or the use of abandoned cars by other officers, would be handled by the DA’s office.
Carrerra said the department did have a standing order now not to tow cars if a driver did not have a license with them. Residents stated cars are often towed in the city arbitrarily and they felt police intentionally made it difficult to get them back.
Activist Carlos Quintanilla who brought the issue to Carreras attention last week, said more officers needed to be reprimanded for their actions. The city Tuesday rescinded an ordinance allowing officers to use abandoned cars for work, after the mayor said there was evidence of officers using them for non-agency purposes.
(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)
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