Weatherford Democrat

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October 2, 2013

County denies firing related to official’s allegations

Response filed to lawsuit filed by former deputy fire marshal claiming his whistleblowing led to termination

(Continued)

Dabbs later reported the incident to the Texas Ranger Anthony Bradford and District Attorney Don Schnebly, according to the petition.

The Parker County District Attorney’s Office has declined to comment on the issue and the Democrat left a message for but was unable to reach Bradford.

This year, Dabbs received a peace officer license separation form by mail from Scott dated May 7, ending Dabbs’ appointment with the fire marshal’s office. From that, Dabbs understood he was fired, according to the petition.

It’s not clear what Dabbs’ status has been with the department during the intervening 11 months, though the Democrat confirmed in February that Dabbs and another investigator, who was reported to be on medical leave at the time, were not responding to fire calls at that time.

Dabbs reportedly appealed his termination by writing letters to the Parker County Commissioners Court in July but claims he was not given an opportunity to be heard.

However, the county states in its answer that Dabbs was an at-will employee who could be terminated by an elected or appointed official over his department and did not have a right to appeal his termination under county policy because he was no longer an employee.

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