Creath's Successor Sworn Into Office Monday - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

06/23/08 - Tyler

Creath's Successor Sworn Into Office Monday

New leadership is now in place at the Smith County Constable's Office.

Since the death last week of Constable Frank Creath, deputies have been without a leader, and unable to do their jobs.

Now, as KLTV 7's Danielle Capper shows us, the county is taking quick action to get those deputies back to work.

For the past week, the duties for the deputies at the Precinct 2 Constable's Office have been put on hold.

"When our department head passed, per state law we were limited in acting as peace officers." said Glenn Potter on Monday.

"It was in the best interest of the county to go ahead and act today," said Commissioner JoAnn Fleming.

Monday morning, commissioners appointed retired DPS Sergeant Paul Fisher to fill the unexpired term of late Constable Creath.

"Someone who has the administrative experience, someone who has a very credible law enforcement background. Someone I knew would treat the employees out there fairly," said Fleming, describing Sgt. Fisher.

"I did not seek this position," said Sgt. Fisher today. "I feel honored to have been asked take it. I have known Frank a long time and Frank was a friend of mine. I respect Frank and I respect what he has done."

Fisher will hold the office until the November election, with a promise to the court this morning that he won't run.

"My first duty, I feel like, [is to] see what is going on. If changes need to be made, I'll make them. And if there needn't be changes there won't be any changes made. I intend to preserve and enhance the integrity of that office."

This afternoon, under Sgt. Fisher's leadership, the men were re-sworn in, and now they'll go back to work.

Now, they'll decide who will hold the office next permanently. There were no Democrats in the primaries, so the Republicans will have the only name on the ballot.

The Republican chairman told KLTV 7 News today that they'll have a committee that interviews all the interested applicants, and then the precinct chairs will vote to decide whose name will be on the ballot.

The only way another person besides the chosen Republican candidate could get elected is through a write-in on the November ballot.

Danielle Capper, reporting. dcapper@kltv.com

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