A Smith County Adult Probation officer has been fired and is under investigation for inappropriate communications with a female probationer under his supervision.
Smith County Adult Probation Director Gerald Hayden confirmed information that a male, tenured probation officer with the department had been terminated late last month following an internal investigation after allegations surfaced he had made inappropriate comments to a female probationer, who was convicted of felony driving while intoxicated with a child under 15 years old.
Hayden told the Tyler Morning Telegraph in September that an investigation into the allegations turned up "no proof" there was any wrongdoing on the officer's part.
But the woman never changed her story, which she originally reported to the Smith County District Attorney's Office, and eventually the probation officer confided to Hayden he had made comments to the woman.
"I tend to believe my officers when there is no proof, and in this case I still have not seen any proof. The officer in question came to me and confessed he had made some inappropriate comments to the woman in question," he said.
Hayden said the probation officer had been with the department since September 2007 and, as part of the internal investigation, all of the female probationers in the officer's caseload were asked if there were similar comments made to them.
"All of the other women said there had been no inappropriate remarks," he said.
Hayden said the Texas Rangers have the case and are investigating to see if criminal charges are warranted.
"When this all began, the officer said he did not make the comments, but after he said he had made them, then there was nothing further to do than to end his employment with this office. We can't have people lying when asked direct questions into something serious like this," he said.