Sheriffs性视界传媒 Association of Texas Executive Director Steve Westbrook has resigned amid an investigation that he misappropriated funds from the group that he was charged with leading.

During a news conference Thursday afternoon, Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said the association性视界传媒檚 now-former executive director Westbrook is accused of misusing funds over an extended period of time.

性视界传媒淚 had a great relationship (with Westbrook), as did everyone,性视界传媒 Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said at a Thursday news conference.

Smith is president of the Sheriffs性视界传媒 Association of Texas.

性视界传媒淚t性视界传媒檚 a big surprise to everyone, for me,性视界传媒 he said.

On Nov. 17, Smith said he received information that an active investigation into Westbrook was being conducted by the Texas Attorney General性视界传媒檚 Office.

性视界传媒淭he Sheriff性视界传媒檚 Association of Texas became aware of the attorney general性视界传媒檚 action to secure documents, and the association is fully cooperating,性视界传媒 Smith said.

He said tips from two people on the association性视界传媒檚 staff launched the investigation.

The board was briefed on the investigation against Westbrook and unanimously voted to accept his resignation Wednesday in lieu of termination.

As a part of the resignation, Westbrook surrendered his peace officer性视界传媒檚 license with the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement and was ordered pay full restitution that will be determined by a third party.

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Because it is an ongoing investigation, details about how much Westbrook is alleged to have stolen and over what period of time has not been released.

性视界传媒淭he Texas Attorney General性视界传媒檚 criminal investigation will continue and the association will cooperate fully with the investigation and the prosecutor,性视界传媒 Smith said. 性视界传媒淭he association has retained an independent accounting firm and law firm to review the allegations in the interim.性视界传媒

During the meeting in Austin, the board of directors of the Sheriff性视界传媒檚 Association of Texas unanimously voted to name Skylor Hearne an interim director.

性视界传媒淢r. Hearne性视界传媒檚 impeccable reputation and background as well as his unquestioned integrity make him uniquely qualified to serve as interim executive directory director of the Sheriff性视界传媒檚 Association of Texas,性视界传媒 Smith said.

Skylor Hearne, who was with the Texas Department of Public Safety for 26 years, was named interim director of the Sheriffs性视界传媒 Association of Texas.

Smith has been president of the association for four months and vowed immediate change, stating the incident has given the group a 性视界传媒渂lack eye.性视界传媒

性视界传媒淭wo people would be handling money from this point forward,性视界传媒 he said. 性视界传媒淚t will require double signatures and many other things would be checked and balances would be put in place to ensure this never happens.性视界传媒

Westbrook worked for the Texas Department of Corrections for numerous years and was captain of the K9 program. He also worked as a special ranger with Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association.

性视界传媒淭his is a shock to every sheriff that knew him,性视界传媒 Smith said. 性视界传媒淏ut we will continue to serve our members and the citizens of Texas.性视界传媒