New video surfaces of Waller County constable being pulled over

Miya Shay Image
Friday, August 21, 2020
New video surfaced in controversial traffic stop
New video shows the incident with the constable who claims he was racially profiled.

HOUSTON,Texas (KTRK) -- New video has surfaced in a controversial traffic stop that's pitted one elected constable against another.

On Wednesday, Waller County Precinct 3 Constable Herschel Smith held a news conference, accusing a 911 caller and the Harris County Precinct 5 Constable Ted Heap of racial profiling. Constable Smith says he was pulled over and handcuffed by deputies because he was racially profiled.

Constable Heap pushed back against that assertion, pointing out the 911 caller never mentioned the driver's race when he called, reporting that a man was driving down the Beltway and pointed a gun at him through the window.

On Thursday, ABC13 obtained video captured by cameras from the Harris County Toll Road Authority. In the video, you can see several Precinct 5 Constable vehicles follow the black Tahoe driven by Smith along the Beltway. The Tahoe pulls to a stop, and several deputies draw their weapons. About a minute into the traffic stop, you can see Constable Smith sticks a hand out the driver's side window. A short time later, he comes out of the vehicle with his arms extended. Constable Smith is then led to the backside of a patrol vehicle, where he was handcuffed by a Precinct 5 deputy.

"They ignored my badge, my uniform, and they ignored my name," Smith said on Wednesday, pointing to his name plate. "It says, Constable."

RELATED: Waller Co. Pct. 3 constable claims he was racially profiled when pulled over

"The suspect's race was never mentioned," said Constable Heap during a different news conference on Wednesday, pointing out the two lead deputies themselves were Black.

The toll road video shows Constable Smith was handcuffed for a little under two minutes. He was then released, and the video shows both the constable and deputies on scene speaking for a few additional minutes.

Reached on the phone today, Constable Smith, who said the stop occurred while he was on his way home from an extra job, wants everyone involved, including himself, to take a lie detector test. Constable Heap says he's leaving the investigation to the Texas Rangers.

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