East Texas city makes controversial decision on police chief

By Taylor Hemness - bio | email

Edgewood City Council members met Tuesday night to consider allegations against an East Texas police chief, but ultimately decided to take no action.

Edgewood Police Chief Henry Askew is under fire for allegations involving the sexual assault case of a former Edgewood officer.

Korinia Kennedy says her stepfather, Marvin Ray Williams, was working for the Edgewood Police Department when she came forward to report being kidnapped and raped by him as a girl.

She also says that after Williams' arrest, his fellow officers helped get him to court in Alabama, the state where the sexual assault happened, and even offered him a place to live after he was indicted.

"Officer Dearing drove Marvin Williams to Alabama strictly because Marvin has cataracts and cannot safely see to drive," Chief Askew said. "We had no influence on court proceedings. Officer Dearing never entered the courtroom. He stayed outside with the court security officer and all this was done at Marvin Williams' expense."

But there are more accusations against Chief Askew.

A current council member claims he was threatened with possible fines and jail time when he asked about allegations of misconduct by the chief.

This council member says Chief Askew fails to limit the amount of comp time by full-time officers, allows his family members to remain at the police station for extended periods of time, and does not keep a professional appearance on duty... citing the chief has been seen wearing sweat pants and T-shirts in his patrol car.

But accusations are also aimed at other members of the Edgewood City Council.

In a letter of resignation...James McEnturff says he left the council because of "repeated acts of violations of the city's regulations."

"When a council person makes inquiries into possible misconduct allegations from a citizen involving a city employee, instead of considering there may be some merit to the allegations, certain ones of you threaten the council person with possible civil fines and incarceration," McEnturff said in his resignation letter.

Before the decision, Korinia Kennedy told KLTV 7 that no matter the outcome, she doesn't regret the actions that she's taken.

"I did what I believed in, and I stood by what I believed in," Kennedy said. "I will be able to walk away, and know that I had faith, and my faith is seeing me through."