Community reacts to Hockley County Sheriff trial - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/25/10

Community reacts to Hockley County Sheriff trial

LEVELLAND, TX (KCBD) -

By Brittany Pieper  - bio | email

LEVELLAND, TX (KCBD) - While former Hockley County Sheriff David Kinney fights for his job in the courtroom this week, Levelland residents share their opinion on the civil case. Kinney was suspended as Hockley County Sheriff after two of his deputies were arrested for their involvement in a methamphetamine drug trafficking ring in July.

Wednesday, Kinney took the stand and told jurors he felt Hockley County Attorney Christopher Dennis was out to get him, and he doesn't know why.

On Thursday, DPS Investigator Chris Wischkaemper took the stand and Hockley County Attorney's asked him about evidence holding procedures. Hockley County Attorneys raised suspicion because they found no evidence logs from the Hockley County Sheriff's evidence room for an extended period of time from 2007 to 2009. Wishkaemper testified that he feels peace officer's should keep these kinds of logs in order to protect the integrity of evidence. 

Wischkaemper also said he thinks it was obvious Kinney's Chief Deputy, Gordon Bohannon, associated with the leader of the trafficking ring, Bobby Froman, because his truck was often parked in front of Froman's house.

Kinney's attorney has argued that Kinney did not know of any illegal activity going on and should not be held responsible for his deputies' actions.

Kinney's suspension became a hot topic in the Levelland community. Most of the people KCBD NewsChannel 11 spoke with said they feel Kinney should not get his job back. "It's good idea just to go ahead and clean the house. Even if he didn't know what was going on, it's kind of hard because he was the sheriff, so he should have known what was going on," said Hockley County resident Jennifer Delcamo. 

"He's responsible for his people and controlling what his people do and watching out for them. If he's not responsible enough to do that, why should he be let back on," said Hockley County Resident Landon Turner.

Kinney supporters feel if he wasn't involved in the illegal activity he should not be punished.

Regardless of the outcome, Hockley County law enforcement has a long way to go to regain some community members' trust. "Time, and them really getting out and just showing us that they're really ready to make a change," said Delcamo.

©2010 KCBD NewsChannel 11. All rights reserved.

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