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Cop Watch: Head of DPS Suddenly Resigns After He’s Accused of Sexual Harassment and Unprofessional Conduct

What was Col. Stanley E. Clark possibly thinking when he was blowing kisses to female employees, touching them inappropriately, and calling one veteran employee “his girl”? Sometimes, you just gotta shake your head and wonder.

Here’s the story of how 60 year old Col. Clark made some really stupid choices.

The Texas Department of Public Safety is a big deal here in Texas. DPS issues all motor vehicle licenses for the State of Texas and it regulates all the motor vehicles in the State. Everyone residing and driving on Texas roads today (legally) has been okayed by DPS to do so.

DPS is the State’s Law Enforcement Agency, Responsible for Curtailing Drug Trafficking and Organized Crime Across the State

DPS is also responsible for statewide law enforcement. It’s the state cop agency.

The DPS Criminal Law Enforcement Division has a big job here in Texas, because it is the agency assigned the big job of dealing with drug trafficking and organized crime across the state. That’s a very, very big deal these days.

DPS also has a huge crime lab, which helps out other law enforcement agencies across the state. (How well it does this is a different post, for a different day.)

DPS is home to the Texas Rangers

And, DPS is home to the Texas Highway Patrol as well as the internationally known Texas Rangers. You know, the modern-day versions of Lonesome Dove’s Woodrow Call and Gus McCrae.

So, you get the idea. The Texas Department of Public Safety is one big, giganto deal to be assigned the job of overseeing. Big Kahuna time.

Once in a Lifetime Opportunity

And, when the Governor’s Mansion burned down last fall, the head of DPS retired and an interim director got to step up to the plate. That guy was Col. Stanley Clark, 60 years old, and here he was: running the Top Cop Shop in Texas.


Here was a guy who was a lifer — he’d started as a highway patrolman 36 years ago, and risen through the ranks. A real American success story.

Now, less than a year after Clark got the Big New Job, a bunch of female employees have all filed statements against him, and characterizing Col. Clark has gone from a vision of John Wayne in The Comancheros to Jackie Gleason in Smokey and the Bandit.

Legislative Review of the Department of Public Safety

So, what happens now? Perhaps Col. Clark retires to his home in East Texas. Who knows who gets the Top Cop job next — but it’s already in the works that an Inspector General may be named, who would report any oversights within the agency to the Texas Legislature. And, there’s talk of a major overhaul of the entire DPS organization.

With Justice Keller and now Col. Clark, what IS the state of Texas criminal law today?


Dallas Morning News

Houston Chronicle

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