State Agency Investigating Buckholts Police Chief for Falsifying Documents

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State investigators now say Buckholts Police Chief James Blackmon was handing out badges to people who didn't work for the department. After two years as chief, he's sitting in the Milam County Jail.

In a town like Buckholts, with a population around 300, word spreads fast.

"People are in disbelief and they're going to question it," says one resident. "How did this happen? What happened? That's the big question."

Buckholts Police Chief James Blackmon is in the crossharis of the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Edcuation, or TCLEOSE. They are responsible for regulating standards and education for law enforcement personnel.

"What we're alleging is the falsification of some government documents that was sent to us," says TCLEOSE Executive Director Kim Vickers.

Blackmon is accused of giving 8 people the authority, including I-D's and badges, from the Buckholts Police Department without any background screening.

"He submitted to us licensing documents giving appointments to people, and declaring that all steps had been done to legally appoint them, and that they were full time paid employees," says Vickers.

That wasn't the case. When TCLEOSE did an audit of the department they found that none of the steps that are required by law had been done, even after Blackmon swore they had.

According to Blackmon's service record, he's worked in 22 different Texas cities and compiled over a thousand hours of continuing education.

TCLEOSE investigators say Blackmon is very familiar with the process of licensing full-time officers. He followed procedure with the two full-time officers already working at the department.

Investigators are now looking into what those eight people were doing that needed this authority.

"I have nothing to indicate one way or the other what benefit they may have gained from it," says Vickers.

Blackmon is in the Milam County Jail and his license to be a peace officer in Texas is being revoked. Leaving the town of Buckholts without a police chief.

The charge of tampering with government documents is a Class A misdemeanor.

An anonymous phone call started the investigation.